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tv   Book TV  CSPAN  February 16, 2013 10:15am-5:00pm EST

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the newest book is "why priest," and in that, the pretty ser prize winning historian questions whether the priesthood is a necessary component of christianity today. up next, al gore talking about his most recent book "the future," and this is live coverage on booktv on c-span2. [inaudible conversations] >> good morning, i'm delighted to welcome you to the 6th annual savannah book festival. so far, we heard dave beer rei, bobby dean, james patterson, and nbc's hoda. and we still have more than 0 renowned authors speaking at six different venues in and around the square today.
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it's an embarrassment of riches, and we must thank the city of savannah department of cultural affairs, festival upon spores, members, and individual donors for their support. it is because of them that we are able to bring you these esteemed authors for free. if you enjoyed today's speakers and would like to make a donation to the festival, we've provided yellow buckets at the door when you exit. please consider giving to our bucket list for next year's gifted scribes. before we get started, i just have a couple of housekeeping notes for you. please take a moment to silence your cell phones. i had to do that myself. okay. immediately following his
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presentation, mr. gore will be signing copies of his book. please go to the fellowship hall which is located directly behind the pulpit, and you go out the doors and around, and a right turn as you enter the exit the sanctuary. there's volunteers outside to direct you. mr. gore will be able to sign 400 books, and you must have the numbered card that was included with your book purchase. your signing order will correspond with your card number, and you will be called in groups of 25. when you enter the sanctuary, volunteers distributed index cards and pencils. if you have any questions for mr. gore, write them down as clearly and legendly as possible. at the conclusion of the presentation, volunteers will collect the cards, and we will ask as many questions as time
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allows. you may notice cameras set up in this venue. that's c-span's book tv which is broadcasting the savannah book festival live to the nation today. [applause] this is the second year of our partnership, and we really cherish their support. one, be on your best behavior, and, two, let's give them, c-span, another round of applause. [applause] please join me in thanking mr. and mrs. jack romanos for sponsoring this beautiful venue, the trinity united methodist church, and many thanks to howard and mary morrisson for
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sponsoring our next speaker, former, vice president, al gore. howard, will you dot honors? [applause] >> u.s. senator, vice president of the united states, nobel peace prize recipient, as cor winner, best selling author, any one of these superlatives alone would be enough to suggest that our next speaker is a force with which to be reckoned, but when combined into one individual, it is evident that al gore is a force of nature. he is always been on the leading edge of promoting the internet as a tool for greater communication, of climate change as one of the greatest perils of
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our time, and in his latest book, "the future," of the key medical technological, and philosophical drivers checking our world. ever the big picture thinker, al gore explores how we may harness these epic change agents for the good. although his public professionalized had it not been without controversy, his record of accomplishments speak to the life lived on the precipice of passion, purpose, and possibility. on behalf of the savannah book festival, it is by great honor to introduce to all of you al gore. [applause]
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[cheers and applause] >> thank you very much, thank you. thank you very much. [applause] thank you so much. oh, it's so great to be here, and, thank you, for that very generous and warm welcome. it's great to be back in savannah, one of the most beautiful cities in the entire world. i always enjoy coming here. i want to thank howard morrisson for that very kind introduction and we've had a chance to visit this morning, and howard and mary are great folks here and contribute so much to this community. congratulations to the savannah book festival in this sixth year. it keeps on getting better and growing and people are excited about it. i got friends here, andy wright
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used to work for me in the white house, and so as a lawyer, and i'm glad he and his family settled here in savannah. thank you to the trinity united methodist church for the beautiful venue, and the books, ladies and gentlemen, independent local bookstores are part of the bedrock of our whole civilization so let's support them. [cheers and applause] so i want to tell you about that book, "the future: six drivers of global change." i've always been fascinated with those who try to look over the horizon and see what's coming at us, and back when i was a young congressman, i had the privilege of chairing a group called the congressional clearinghouse on the future, and it was started by a north carolina congressman, charlie rose, the other charlie
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rose we say now. [laughter] charlie has passed on, but he was a great man, and he asked me to chair it in my second term in the congress, and i had a chance to invite to the congress, oh, gosh, al and john and buck and margaret and carl, and first one, and then the other, hundreds of them, and it was a wonderful experience. in in case, i learned from them, and i have been trying over the years to try to use some of those techniques, and about eight years ago, i was in a conference making a speech in europe, and somebody asked me, what are the drivers of global change? i gave an answer i thought was adequate, and i thought it was a little better than that, of course --
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barbara dafoe whitehead but when -- but when i got on the plane to fly back to the u.s., that question nagged at me a little bit, and i took out my computer, and i started outlining a better answer, and that ended up becoming something of an obsession. a couple years after that, it turned out that that outline had some value in the real world. i had co-founded an investment company called generation investment management, with my partner, david blood. i wanted to call it blood and gore, but -- [laughter] i hope you won't think less of me when i tell you that i really did want to call it that. [laughter] we used this outline as one of the inputs for our investment models, and it has worked pretty
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well, and then a couple years ago, it had grown to be so elaborate, i decided to turn it into a book, and i had a scoping exercise with some of the smartest people i could find who spent two days trying to sort of look over the horizon and help to get all of this in speer specktive, and i asked one of them at the start of it, kind of an emotional question, how do you feel about the future? he said, i feel fine, and i didn't think that was very helpful, but -- [laughter] , but it reminded me of a story i first heard 35 years ago when i was a young congressman representing 25 rural counties in tennessee, and on a saturday night, i had a town hall meeting all day long, and i was driving back in the evening to my farm, and i was listening on the car radio to the grand old opry, and
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back in those days, there was a wonderful comedian named cousin minny pearl, and a few of you remember her. she was the one with the price tag still on her straw hat, calico dress, and she told a story about a farmer involved in an accident, and he suffered damages, and he went to court, sued the driver of the other vehicle. that other driver hired a lawyer who put this farmer on the witness for cross-examine, and he asked the farmer, now, isn't it true that immediately after this accident, you said, i feel fine? the farmer said, well, it's not that simple. you see, i was taking my cow to town in the back of my truck, and this fellow came driving across the center of the highway -- >> the lawyer said, i object, it's the middle of the trial here. we don't want a long and involved story, just answer the question, yes or no. did you or did you not say immediately after the accident i
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feel fine? >> the farmer said, well, i was leading up to that. [laughter] you see, i was taking my cow to town -- [laughter] in the back of any truck, and this fellow came driving across the center of the highway and ran right smack dab into the truck and knocked it over, threw me out, the cow out, i was on one side, the cow on the other, and a highway patrolman looked at the cow, and said, oh, she's suffering. pulled out the gun and shot her between the eyes. [laughter] then he came around to my side of the truck, and said, how do you feel? i said, i feel fine! [laughter] i think, honestly, that -- [laughter] that sometimes our attitudes about the future are a little bit like that compared to what? [laughter] we are now living in a time of
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absolutely revolutionary change, and the power of these changes and the simultaneous changes is something we have never seen before. never have so many revolutionary drivers of change been coming at us at the same time. i want to run through all six of them, briefly, and then i look forward to your questions, and i'll do my best to answer them and then i'll sign your book, and i did a presigning. the ink is barely dry, so i look forward to visiting with each one of you who comes through over at fellowship hall. to begin with, talk about change itself. we are used to experiencing change of a particular kind.
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slow, steady, incremental change, linnier change. yesterday, it was not much different from today, and tomorrow will be no different from today. there are changes that are bursting forth piling up the potential for change without anything seems to happen much because the seeming change can be held back by a barrier of sorts or old habits and customs, and then when it reaches critical mass, this potential change can breakthrough the barrier, and there it is, all of the sudden. that's sometimes called emergent change, and back in those days when i was a young congressman, one of the scientists that came to talk with us that had a big impact on me was the man from belgium, short, balding, born in
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russia three months before the russian revolution in 1917, and he discovered a new law of nature, law of dynamics, the physical law that says systems break down over time. think about a smoke ring. it starts as a coherent donut and then as the molecules separate and the energy dispates, it just breaks apart. everything is that way, and some -- some systems, it occurs quickly, and others it takes place over a longer period of time. he discovered what's the opposite of that. he studied open systems that have energy flowing into it and
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through it and out again, and what he fund was that when the flow of energy into an open system increases enough beyond a certain threshold, two things happen, the pattern of the system breaks down, but here's the surprising part, then the system reorganizes itself at a higher level of complexity. the whole feel of complexity, science came from that discovery, and the way we use the word "emergence," the phrase "emergent phenomena" really comes from that discovery so think for a minute about what happened over the last 20 # years with the internet. when bill clinton and i went into the white house in 1993, there were 50 sites on the worldwide web. now there's a trillion of them. look at what happened to newspaper all over the world.
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dallas part of -- that's part of the breakdown of the old pattern, but now we have facebook, twitter, and it keeps going. i spent time in silicon valley, and there's 20 # new companies out there that reached a ball dollar evaluation just in the last year and a half. our world is changing dramatically, some of the old is breaking down, and fading away and dispating, but the new patterns are quite complex and challenging and they bring a lot of changes. these six drivers of global change are all emergent changes. they have been building up for awhile, and now they are all kind of happening statement. let's take them one by one. number one, chapter one. earth inc, a new interconnected,
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global economy that operates as if it is a single entity. we've been seeing the outsourcing of jobs, and we've been seeing the connection of the supply side, and now we have virtual factories with supply lines running to hundreds of countries and almost every business has to see its competitive landscape in the global dimension. earth inc.has a different relationship to national government and national economic policies now, a different relationship to labor and capital and natural resources, the three classic factors of production. look, for example, one of the changes that illustrates this new really of effort inc. , and
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normally after a recession when we get a recovery and growth resumes, the jobs come back, and that's the way it's always been, but in the last couple of recessions, it had not happened that way because we now have this gloanl reality, and -- global reality, and some businesses that lay people off in the recession, they are not hiring them back the way they used to. some of them, yes, but we now have outsourcing in a completely different way, and when a business is faced with the need to give employees a raise, well, if they can just ship the job overto some other country, then it's so easy now they are doing that. it's not just outsourcing but robo sourcing, the word used to
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describe a brand new level of automation that's different from what we've seep in the past. you know, for hundreds of years, since those days of the l urges dites. you remember that story. they organized people to smash apart the jobs, and we always snickered at him and the economic evidence as proven time and again that new technologies almost always create more new jobs than they displace, and that's been the pattern, but there are an increasing number of economists who are now asking whether or not that is still the pattern, and here's the difference they point to. flood warnings -- technology not only extends our physical capacities, but also
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our cognitive capacities. it's not so significant that a super computer won jeopardy, but i was impressed, and a few years ago, one captured the international chess championship, but in addition to the niche applications, now a lot of these intelligent machines, algorithms and robots do significant things. there's one algorithm law firms use to make it possible for a single first year lawyer working with this computer algorithm to do the same amount of research that used to require 500 first year lawyers, and they don't -- he doesn't make as many mistakes. way fewer mistakes, in fact. the way we used to think about a situation like that is new and unusual, but we always assume those other 499 lawyers that go
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eat get a job somewhere else, but when the other law firms start using and that other businesses, then my point is we are seeing the combination of outsourcing and robosourceing really transform our economy. the middle class, let's be candid about this, and the united states, for quite some time now, has been really struggling. the middle class jobs have been kind of hallowed out, and, by the way, this trend is not just happening in our country. it's in europe, japan, and it's also in china, and in india. you may have heard of the chinese company called fox con that makes the smart phone and digital devices. they announced over the next three years, they are installing one million robots.
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now, these young chinese men and women who have migrated in such large numbers from the impoverished rural areas of china from the centers of manufacturing, closer to the export terminals, what are they going to do when they compete with these row -- robots, and the robots get smarter and the algorithms and thinking machines get smarter all the time. moore's law, which everybody knows about, making the computers twice as fast every 18-24 months for the same dollar. you don't have to keep going in that pattern for very long before they get in much smarter than they are now, and they are now beginning to take on tasks that we have always assumed would remain the unique province of our species. we are talking now about
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economic policies in our country that represent a pattern that really is rooted in the past, and, again, the jobs are not coming back in the same way. in a minute, i'll tell you where the income is going and some of the reasons why, but i'll move on from earth inc because i got five more. if you want to know more about any of them, i have a suggestion on where you can go for more information. [laughter] carpet two, the second driver of global change, the emergence of the global mind. digital networks including principally the internet, a couple with digital devices that connect us all, the thoughts and feelings of billions of people instantaneously, and connects them not only to one another, but to the intelligent machines and to intelligent devices and
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computers that are getting more and more common all over the world, and sensors that are being embedded in the physical world at an incredible rate, and connecting us to vast data base with all the knowledge ever compiled in the history of human civil -- civilization available to us at our fingertips. it changes the way we think. it really does, just as every significant communications advance in history has brought about changes in our thinking, back when the ancient greeks perfected the phonetic alphabet, all of the sudden, the symbols used in written language were not representative of the ideas
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they conveyed, not little stylized pictures, but they were symbols with no meaning at all in and of themselves, but when you cruise -- use them in combination, we have meanings to them, and it's miraculous in a way to read in books and pick up these symbols just instantaneously. we organized our brains to do that. well, there's a lot of people who think that the reason why ancient greece marked a point of departure in civilization was that when people organized their minds in that new way, all of the sudden, what came out? philosophy and dramatic theater and complex ideas like democracy. fast forward 1800 years after ancient athens and the printing press, all the knowledge was distributed throughout society
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triggering a wave of literacy, and people began to get access to knowledge of the ancients, and then a demand grew for contemporary works and shakespeare and journals that became newspapers and, pretty soon, people said, you know, that lord there don't know a thing about what's going on in our village here. we have to make decisions for ourselves, and the reformation began to challenge the primacy of the medieval church, and the whole world was made over, and within just a few decades, the voyages of discovery began, and when columbus came back from the baja mas, there were 11 print editions just sailing around europe and opening people's imaginations, and within two generations, the whole world had been discovered, circumnavigated and everything changed. now, these changes we're
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undergoing now, if you think about how powerfully the printing press transformed the world, just imagine what the challenges are that are being caused by the emergence of the global mind. 50% of people with smart phones look at them first thing in the morning before they get out of bed. be careful driving to work because the people work on them while they are driving in the other lanes, and you've probably be in dinner conversations with friends and loved ones when all the sudden everything stops when somebody looks up what you're talking about. you have been in rooms where nobody's talking because everybody's looking at a different device, so these kinds of changes are quite remarkable, but remember, we're not only connecting to the data bases and to ourselves, but all of these sensors. i'll give you a quick example. look, dairy farmers in europe,
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when you use these milking machines, and the force feeding and the new diets and everything, the cattle, the cycle compresses a little bit, so if they want to breed the dairy cattle to get calfs, they really got to be on their toes. they embedded, put digital sensors in the cattle, and when the cow comes in heat, she texts the farmer now. [laughter] i'm not making this up. it's the first example of interspee ceases texting. there are -- interspecies texting. there are a lot. this brings with it the fraternal twins of opportunity and peril. there are some risks that we
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need to manage as we all move our lives into the global mind. if you go right now on your smart phone to and look up a word, without you knowing it, that business will put 234 small computer programs or cookies on your smart phone that tracks your movements around the internet from now on. there's a lot of businesses that do that. we have a stalker economy out there. they compile digital files on everybody, and most of it's benign. they sell it to advertisers to better target the ads that they send you so you'll be more likely to want to see what they are showing you, but they are selling them to other people now too.
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there's been examples where this causes problems, and the hackers are getting into the files, and foreign governments -- many of our high-tech businesses here in the u.s. have been penetrated by hackers who steal their intellectual property. one business in silicon valley lost a billion dollars worth of multiyear research in a single weekend, and a lot of these businesses that are hacked and penetrated don't even want to talk about it. some of them don't report it because they don't want people to know. it's becoming a very serious problem. by the way, now the hackers cannot only get information, they can make changes in the physical world to power plants, and they can sabotage things. it was a computer worm that
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destroyed those gas centerfuges in iran, and, unfortunately, our country is highly vulnerable because, again, weave moved into the global mind and increasingly, our processes and factories and machineries and infrastructure are connected to it. again, i have to move on. there's so much more to have in this that needs to be explored. chapter 3, in the dimension of political and economic power, the organization of the world is undergoing the biggest changed that we've seen in 500 years, since the europeans discovered the new world. the united states has been the unquestioned leader of the world since the end of world war ii, and especially since the collapse of communism in 1989, and we are proud as americans
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that people in the rest of the world really look to the u.s. and are inspired by the values that we have demonstrated in our country, and they want to be like us. in a few years, china will be the most powerful economy in the world. they recently passed us as the largest trading nation. our relative strength seems to have been declining. now, it doesn't have to continue. by the way, one of the themes of this book that's particularly emphasized in chapter 3 is that the united states of america is and remains the only nation that is capable of providing leadership to the world. i've been doing book interviews with authors -- journalists in foreign countries, and sometimes
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i'll say that, and they say, well, that's just an american point of view. no, it's not. i'm proud of my country. yes, i'll plead guilty to that for sure, but you just tell me what other country has the potential to do it. the european union has its hands full, doesn't have a president or executive. china does not have the perceived moral authority that will induce the rest of the world to ever in the foreseeable future look at them as a leader. they don't have democracy. you know, they corrupt and they have all of these problems, and who else is there? at a time when we're facing these six major drivers of change, the world -- these are global issues, and we have to confront them in the global dimension, and that requires leadership. we, as americans, have a particular responsibility in my view, and a particular challenge to help restore the leadership
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potential of the united states of america because the shift in power relationships, the chapter's called "power in the balance" is not only taking place shifting from west to east and china is the bilgest champ, but there's others, but there's also resourcing power to emergent sensors of economic strength all over the world in sound in istanbul and johannesburg. in fact, the aggregate size of all of the economies in the developing world is now larger than the size of all the economies in the advanced industrial nations. the world is changing. inside the united states we have seen a shift in power here as well. as a matter of fact, ladies and gentlemen, and i use this phrase
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in a considered way. our democracy has been hacked. the phrase -- the word "hacked," you know, is a computer word where the operating system of the computer is taken over remotely and make the computer do things you don't want it to do. well, our operating system was handed to us by our founders in the constitution, and it's not working the way it should. i speak as one who served as an elected official in the federal government for 24 years, and i've watched it all my life, and i want to jigs very simply explain what the difference is today compared to the way it's supposed to work. back in those years when i was listening to the ground old opri on the car radio, i would have these town hall meetings
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regularly. i was first elected in 1976, and i started going to all of the county courthouses in these counties, and then i went to the smaller communities, and people would come, and you remember the norman rockwell painting of a man standing up in the town hall meeting? it was like that. i'm telling you. i don't want to sound corny about it, but i can barely find the words to describe the genuine thrill in my heart that i felt when i was able to play the role our founders carved out for a member of the hoys of representatives. listening to them, doing my best to understand what could be done to improve their lives, hearing their suggestions on what needed to be changed, and then going to the seats of government in washington, d.c. and fighting on their behalf, and learning stuff that might cause me to vote differently than they would necessarily expect, and then going back explaning why,
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telling them what i learned on their behalf. i -- it was an amazing experience, and, honestly, again, i don't want to sound corny, but it was -- it just filled my heart with joy. no kidding. it was wonderful. now, here is the difference. here's the difference today. we've got good people up there that are now trapped in a bad system. the main thing is the role of big money. back in the days when our country was founded, everything was on the printing press, you know, and people could easily go and get the knowledge they wanted, and they could contribute their own ideas, and if somebody agreed with them, they might tell their friends, and it's like a google search. it starts kind of bubbling up. thomas payne walked out his front door in philadelphia. he was a imgrant from centerfuges land, but he could think and write clearly, walked out the door and opened 12 shops
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in 10 blocks and printed common sense in 1776, and it was the harry potter of the late 18th century. [laughter] it helped to ignite the american revolution. well, starting in the last third of the 20th century, television displaced the printing press as the main way we communicate in our democracy. s # -- it had a profound impact. it's not a two-way conversation. the printing press, you get what you want to know and contribute your own ideas. with television, you can talk back to the tv screen, but it doesn't hear you because you're you're -- unless you call if on the c-span show. that's an exception there. my point is mostly it's a one way flow of information, and it's mostly sponsored by large
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advertisers, but they are increaseingly sponsoring political ideas as well. when they show coal ads on tv, you think they are trying to convince you to say to your spouse or partner, honey, i'm going to go to the store and buy us some coal. no. they are trying to convince you to adopt their political point of view, but now what happens when thomas payne today with revolutionary ideas that can make everything better walked out his front door and goes to the near education tv station and says, okay, i've got this video on common sense. when do i go on the air? i'm ready. well, of course, you know what happens. they say, well, you know, it'll take $10 million for a half hour, whatever the cost is, and so the only people that are able to communicate with the masses in the way that it happens today on television, are ones with huge amounts of money, mostly
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corporations and special interests, and so when a congressman or a senator wants to run for reelection, they've got to get on that tv. they've got to buy those 30-second ads, and they are expensive. they get more expensive every year. where do they get the money? well, they go to the special interests because the special interests are waiting for them to come. anonymous billionaires, and, now, the ones just elected went up to the orientation. here's what they told them. you will need x million dollars by the time you run for re-election. we've calculated the number of days between now and then so you got to raise $12, 15, 20, $25,000 every single day between
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now and then. take the rest of the day off, but tomorrow, we have special room set up with lists of special interests and lobbyists and rich people, and you -- they spend five to six hours a day making those calls. now, he's the thing. i described the feeling that i had to, you know, make in that -- our system work the way it's supposed to. everybody's who's done that is inspired by it. if you have to spend five to six hours a day begging for money from rich people and special interests, human nature being what it is, you know that the next time they vote, they are going to think about what the impact's going to be on their telephone calls and on the people they meet at these fundraisers. laming, we need -- ladies and gentlemen, we need to reclaim the integrity of our democracy. we need to overturn -- [applause]
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we -- [applause] we need to overturn citizens united. corporations are not people. [applause] you know that. we all know that. we need to require that these people making anonymous contributions disclose who they are so that we can see what they are trying to influence them to do. it's an important and urgent matter. a lot is at stake. now, i'm hopeful because just as we've gone from the printing press to the television age, we are now seeing the emergence of the internet age and even though it's still in infancy and television is dominant, there's individual bloggers affect the course of debate. we are seeing young people to use the internet to be involvedded in their communities than any previous generation, so
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we've got some good and positive developments that are going to help us. they are putting wind in our sail, but we, the people, as the president reminded us the other night, the other day in his inauguration, we the people have the main responsibility for doing this. now, let me move on because i'm going to run out of time. chapter 4 is entitled "outgrowth," and we're growing, our civilization is growing, effort inc is growing. ..
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cheney getting on up there. it quadrupled in less than a century. and it is a level where we are above $10 million, $10 billion and cities are growing, urbanization trends is incredible and the economic activity is growing so rapidly that putting pressure on some key resources like underground water supplies, freshwater, topsoil, in many areas my father's generation responded to fdr's challenge to conserve the soil. in many places around the world including the midwest, we are losing topsoil at an unsustainable rate and our own
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underground aquifers are going down several meters year, out of sight and out of mind, nothing is being done about it but with this growth we have got to do something about it. here is the main point i want to make about growth. growth has become the holy grail. every nation's economic policy is focused on bringing growth. every corporation's business plan is focused on growth. if growth is just sort of seen as the same thing as progress, growth is good and lack of growth is bad, that is the general assumption, it matters, then, what we mean by growth. what is growth? it turns out it is a very specific definition that goes back to the 1930s, a man named
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simon kuznatz was one of the economists credited for it, who came up with gdp, gross domestic product. and that is our conference, the ddt's growing -- that is the big one. it is not, we are in trouble. it is interesting that in 1937 and thereafter, he said thank you very much for this honor, but i need to tell you something. please do not use gdp as a guide for economic policy. why did he say that, he understood it thoroughly and pointed out that it leaves out a lot of important things and if we don't pay attention to what is left out of gdp we are going to get in trouble and that is what we did and we have gotten
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into trouble. what does it leave out? he called them externalities', like george orwell, if something is an externality you are saved ignoring and forgetting about it and negative and positive, negative include pollution, not on the balance sheet, not in the national accounts, out of sight, out of mind, forget about it if you can. we can not anymore. there are positive externalities'. here is what that phrase describes. if we invest in music and art and culture and education and mental health care and community centers and family services, that is an expense. when the benefits start rolling back into society with more vibrant communities and better
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educated young people, that is not measured, that is a positive externality. it is one of the reasons that we in our country are chronically underinvesting in public goods that make life better for everyone, but it doesn't show up on the balance sheet. let's just cut this cut that out, they are cutting out all the benefits that come back and make the economy stronger as well. what else is missing from the definition of growth? the depletion of the underground water, depletion of topsoil, depletion of minerals, what else? the distribution of income. that is a big one. this is a big one. because if all of the extra income goes to the very top, that is counted as a win. gdp has gone up, or a. but the middle class is not
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cheering about that. and in fact, here are the statistics. since the great recession of 2008, not all, 93% of all the extraand national income has gone to the top 1%. that is not an occupy wall street slogan, that is reality. and that is what has been happening. we in the united states have an economy today where we are more unequal than either egypt or tunisia. the inequality is growing. the middle class has been struggling. and again, the gains have gone right up to the very top. we can change that but we have got to have a clear understanding of what we mean by
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growth so that when we implement our economic policies we do so in a way that helps the great majority of the people. i will give you one example that illustrates this and i am not picking on this family, it is a great family, just using them as an example. spam and bud walton founded walmart, and their errors and the next generation between the two of them have five children and one daughter in law. the six individuals now have greater combined net worth than 1 hundred million americans, the bottom third of our country and again it is not the waltons's fault. it is the result of the policies that are producing this pattern. inequality is growing in europe, japan, inequality is growing in china, growing in indiana and one of the reasons is the
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emergence of outsourcing and robotssourcing that gives us a macro economic challenge and let me explain what i mean by that. since the early part of the 20th century, henry ford doubled his employees's wages so they could buy the cars they were making an since mass advertising started stimulating demand, the manufacturing of want they call it, we have had a consumer demand economy so that the middle class gives wages and salaries so that they can go to stores to buy goods and services and that keeps priming the pump and keeping the economy going. the consequences of growing inequality and stagnating wages extend beyond the fact that it defends our sense of fairness and is contrary to what we think our country ought to be like, it also threatens the continued vibrancy of the economy because
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of the middle-class can continue providing that demand, we get into real trouble and that is beginning to happen. let me go to chapter 5, the reinvention of life and death. one of the most powerful revolutionary drivers of global change is the revolution in biology, genetics, genomics, the microbiome, the making of the human brain, new material sciences, 3d printing raise, molecular manipulation, we are now acquiring the ability to change the fabric of life itself and to change the makeup of solid matter. brand new life forms are being created that did not appear in
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nature. those from the south know what kudzu has done and i'm not saying these microscopic critters are like that, these technologies say they haven't control and i'm sure they do. but we need to pay attention to these. anyone have spider goats? i didn't think so but i want to tell you about putter goats. spider silk if you have enough of it is incredibly valuable, stronger than steel, has all the qualities that spider silk has, but you can't have much of it, you can't farm spiders. they are aggressive and cannibalistic and the other two reasons i don't want to farm spiders. here's what you can do.
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you can take their jeans and splice them into goats and they look like goats but they secrete the spider silk through their editors with their milk. everybody okay with that? [laughter] >> somebody said creepy. 3-peat is not fear. creepy is pre fear. something going on but you don't know what is, but it might be something we need to worry about. in truth, there are so many magnificent blessings coming our way out of this life science revolution, cures for diseases that have caused suffering since time immemorial, alleviation of conditions that we never
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imagined. just yesterday they announced a new device that can help some blind people begin to see by sending the signal straight to the brain and so many wonderful things, but again, we need to participate in making choices about how we are going to use these new powers. we are now in charge of evolution. it is hard pressed to think of evolutionary time scales but we are now in charge of it. what will happen when parents are given as they will be in some countries, may be here, the ability -- what they would like to see in their children, hair color, eye color, if you want to dial the intelligence up, parents are competitive and so
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our nations and china has announced its determination to be the world's genetic engineering superpower and i described in this book what they are doing. it is mind blowing. matching children with professions they may be genetically most inclined to do well in, trying to isolate genes that will be markers for more intelligence. we have already seen modifications with pharmaceuticals. it is a national challenge how many of these young kids feel like they have to take concentration enhancing medications to compete in school. what happens when there is a genetic wave to do that? more specifically, one of the things that have caused us
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problems in economic policy is the focus on short-term objectives at the expense of long-term? if we take that approach to these genetic choices and we focus on short-term gains with genetic modifications not taking into account what the long-term evolutionary effect could be, that wouldn't be a good thing so we have got to accelerate the accumulation of wisdom to make the incredibly challenging choices that now lie ahead of us. finally, and i will take the shortest amount of time on this one, the sixth driver of global change you would be surprised in a book by me you didn't have as one of the six drivers of change the climate crisis and it does and is the biggest challenge that we face. earth inc. the bent on carving baseball field for 85% of the energy that is used and when you by fossil fuels you put global warming solutions into the
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atmosphere. it traps heat. it obeys the laws of physics. you can't amend the laws of physics. we now put every single day, we put ninety billion tons of global warming pollution up their as if the atmosphere is an open sewer. back in late nineteenth century, a man came -- john snow discovered how cholera was caused. in london he mapped the cases of cholera, used to be such a big killer and overlaid it on the map of the city's sewers system and traced them all to a single pump on broad street and not long after that louis pasteur discovered that bacteria was causing the problem. they connected the dots. we have been putting all this pollution into the atmosphere as
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it is a sewer and the aggregate amount of man-made global warming pollution that is a bear now attracts enough extra heat every day to equal the energy in four hundred thousand hiroshima atomic bombs going off every day. it is the big planet but that is a lot of energy and we can now connect the dots. look at 2012 last year in our country. it was the hottest year ever measured in the united states. we had those giant fires out west. and in the southeast. we had the worst outbreak of west nile virus ever, 48 of the 50 states in one community in texas, the police department put out a public appeal for people to stop dialing 911 when they got a mosquito bite.
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that is true. we had 61% of the country in the drought and parts of georgia still in dropped. 1 million head of cattle driven out of texas. no one expected them to ever return. have of the north polar icecap melted last summer. the jet stream is getting all haywire. $110 billion of climate related disaster damage in this country last year. and superstorm sandy, devastating the manhattan and new jersey. that is when i put out my movie, the most common criticism i heard was from people who said he showed an animation of sea water going into the world trade center memorial site. how irresponsible is that? it happened at the end of last october, way ahead of schedule. in spite of the fact the we had
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all these climate related disasters, in a year when we had more presidential campaign debate than ever in any campaign in history not one single reporter asked one single question of any of the candidates in any of the debate about the climate crisis. that is pathetic. as a commentary on the quality of the democratic discourse. we have the logo when the cruise ship is coming back into port and we have the special logo and wall-to-wall coverage when a rogue cop is being hunted and that is news, but we need to address this climate crisis. is way past time to do so. in conclusion, ladies and gentlemen, all six of these drivers of global change are
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happening simultaneously and we as human beings, we particularly as citizens of the united states of america have a lot of work to do. if the future is a priority, if we care about the world we are handing off to our children and grandchildren, we have got decisions to make, we have choices we need to confront, we have opportunities to develop. i am an optimist and i am more optimistic after researching and writing this book but my optimism is based on the assumption that we as human beings have the capacity to rise to big challenges and now is such a time. lincoln said as our cases knew we must think and new. the occasion is piled high with difficulty and we must rise with
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the occasion. we must do some from ourselves and then we will save our country. for all is a norse word describing voluntary slavery. we need to free ourselves from outdated ideas that are holding us back. aristotle wrote the end of making defines its nature. should we god forbid fail to rise to this challenge and we see these sweeping changes bring about the end of civilization, what will that say about our nature? who are we as human beings? are we just destined to be proof that the combination of an opposable thumb and neocortex was a big mistake? are we destined to destroy our own future? i refuse to believe it, i refuse to accept it, i believe in humanity, i believe in our creator, i believe in our
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capacity to make the future what it should be and to make it worthy of our children. thank you very much for coming here today. i appreciate it. [applause] >> thank you. thank you very much. i will sign your book now. [applause] >> thank you, savannah. i am going to do questions, right? thank you very much. [inaudible conversations] >> we don't? well, i am going to sign your books now. thank you so much.
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all right. [inaudible conversations] >> you are watching live coverage of the sixth annual seven and a book festival in georgia on booktv on c-span2. more in just a few minutes. [inaudible conversations] >> it is president's day weekend and booktv has extended our programming from now until tuesday at 8:00 a.m. eastern. here are programs to look out for this weekend. today booktv is live from savannah, georgia. our coverage of the savannah book festival ends at 5:00 eastern but real airs tonight at midnight. visit for a complete
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schedule. and at 6:00 and encore presentation of book notes with tom philpot. was the 40th anniversary of the first release of vietnam prisoners of war. his book glorying denied tells the story of jim thompson, a man known as america's longest serving pow. on sunday booktv sits down with a couple of authors at american universities. at 1:00 p.m. eastern, the thistle and the drone:how america's war on terror became a global war on tribal islam followed by general -- jennifer lawless author of the candidate, the political ambition and the decision to run for political office. c-span's new series first lady:influence and image for years and 9:00 p.m. eastern monday. in honor of that series we bring you marry brandon, author of pat nixon at 2:30 p.m. sunday. and at 7:00 p.m. rachel sworn looks at michele obama's
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ancestry in american tapestry. for more information on the first lady ceres visit monday, booktv continues our programming with scientology, winston churchill, michele alexander on the new jim crow, max boot on guerrilla warfare, jonathan katz on haiti aide just to name a few. watch these programs and more on weekend on booktv for a complete schedule, visit >> if you cut demand for somebody's product per day by 50% you must have crushed prices. here is what happened. the average amount of medicare reimburses the day in a hospital has grown by 5 x since 1983. sixty% decline in the number of patients, increase in the price, we should be so lucky.
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i want to be in that business. there's another statistic which is entirely sort of irrelevant. hospitals tell medicare what their costs are so that medicare can compare the price they pay to hospital costs. in those 30 years that medicare increased the price by five times, hospitals reported that their costs have increased big time. the interesting thing is our demand collapsed. in any industry that would have been devastating. medicare paid five times as much but hospitals saying they are only getting reimbursed 40% of their costs down to 70% and one of my most fun -- you have to stand outside to see this, medicare insists hospitals perform medicare services at a loss and that loss has been
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growing. that loss has been growing. since medicare patients are the bulk of hospital patients no one has successfully -- medicare never asked why people are building hospitals? you would think if you lose money on every patient you want to reduce volume, not increase volume. there's a lot of that in health care. wait a minute, if i get off of the island and think in terms of the real world, if gm's price declined they would not be increasing, building factories. i want to spend one more minute on prices because prices, the circulatory system of the economy. one of the things that are most interested -- misunderstood in health care. easing drives the way human beings receive service. one of the things we assume is we pay for health care. how do we pay for health care? one of the arguments i am making today is how we pay drives the type of care we are getting.
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>> you can watch this and other programs on line at >> these are books being published this week. the age of medicine:electric life at the age of modern america. in the terror courts, rough justice at guantanamo bay, just reagan, supreme court correspondent for the wall street journal reports on legal issues surrounding the prosecution of alleged terrorists by military commission. former boston globe reporters dick ware and gerard o'neil recount the life of infamous boston gangster and fbi informant.
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look for these titles in bookstores this coming week and watch for the authors in the near future on booktv and on >> if you cut demand for somebody's product per day by 50% you must have crushed prices. here's what happens. the average amount medicare reimburses. day in a hospital has grown by 5 x. sixty% decline of the number of
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patients, 5 x increase in the price. we shall be so lucky. i want to be in that business. there's another statistic which is entirely sort of irrelevant but fascinating. hospitals tell medicare what their costs are so that medicare can compare the price they paid to hospitals costs. and those 30 years that medicare increased the price by five times hospitals reported that their costs had increased three times so the interesting thing is our demand in any industry that would be devastating. medicare paid five times more but the hospitals say they're getting reimbursed 40% of their costs down from 70%. one of my most put it is you have to stand outside to see
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this, medicare insists that hospitals perform medicare services at a loss and that loss has been growing. you can see the numbers the gross margin number, that has been growing. since medicare patients are the bulk of our hospital patients nobody has successfully explained and medicare never asked why people still building off of this. and you want to reduce volume, not increase volume. there's a lot of that in health care. a lot of things in health care, if i get off of the island and think in terms of the real world, if gm's price declines they would not be increasing, they would be building factories. i want to spend one more moment on prices because prices are the circulatory system of the economy and one of the things most and best misunderstood about health care. these things that actually drive the way human beings receive service. one of the things we assume is that we pay for health care.
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how do we pay for health care? one of the arguments i am making today is how we pay drive the type of care we're getting. >> you can watch this and other programs online at >> psychologist heidi squier kraft joined the navy in 1996. she was deployed to iraq in 2004 with her twin son and our xvi month-old. mrs. kraft discusses her experience now from the savannah book festival. [inaudible conversations] [inaudible conversations]
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[inaudible conversations] >> okay. are we on? great. welcome, everybody. good morning. this is the sixth annual said than a book festival. my name is linda schirmer horn. there are 36 doctors speaking today at six different venues are around the square and all of the authors will sign their books at the book sales center in the middle of the square following their presentation. part of the proceeds of the book sales support the book festival. we hope you will visit the book
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sales can't, pick up a few books, meet some of the authors, have a chat, get your books signed. all of the events are free of charge and open to the public thanks to the support of the city of savannah, department of cultural affairs, festival's sponsors, individual donors. if you enjoy today's presentation you have an opportunity to make a donation in yellow buckets as you exit the venue. take a mullah to make sure your cellphones are turned off. in the not have cameras set up in this venue, c-span's booktv is broadcasting the savannah book festival live to in nation
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today.the nation today. [applause] round of applause. please be on your best behavior. you are representing savannah. this beautiful day the trinity united methodist church is sponsored by mr. and mrs. jack romano. our speaker this hour, former navy psychologist heidi kraft is sponsored by mr. and mrs. john pepper. dr. kraft received a ph.d. in clinical psychology in 1996. daring her psychology internship at drake medical center she joined the navy as an in-flight specialist and clinical psychologist. in february of 2004 when her twin working months old she was
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deployed in iraq for seven months with a marine surgical unit. her book, rule number 2, is about her experience in iraq. today she is a consultant for the navy and the marines post-traumatic stress disorder treatment programs, please welcome dr. heidi squier kraft. [applause] >> good morning. so i have been doing a fair amount of speaking over the last few years and i have to say i am quite certain this is my first talk in which the vice president warmed up the audience for me. it may not be the last but it is the first and i wish he was here
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to hear me say that and and respectfully say thank you, sir, for such a good job. it is an honor to be with you today. how many veterans of the country's military do we have in the audience today? thank you very much for your service. [applause] >> i was sharing with my terrific sponsors last night doing this many speeches sort of become desensitized but sometimes it is still emotional and the reasons for that emotion are sometimes obvious like memorial day. other times it can be things that are upcoming that sort of take me by surprise. baseball season just started. did everyone know that? the skilled players have arrived in spring training. we will see if that is a big deal in san diego or not. but here we are.
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baseball season starting. this makes me think of a young man, very special person and one of our country's he rose close to nine years ago now he died, sacrificing his life for his fellow marines. he was a young man i had the privilege to know for only a few moments holding his hand. they were moments that occurred in an austere field hospital in western iraq. we didn't speak. he couldn't speak. i didn't know him, not really. and because i have come to know his family, much more than a marine, a hero, a beloved son. and baseball player, wonderful experience at his high school including a batting average of 408 which was still record.
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and joseph the marines. and finding life comes full circle, it was two years ago on memorial day that my 8-year-old hit his first out of the park home run and taking a picture of him as he was coming into home plate and all his friends jumping up and down waiting for him, i was testing jason's mother. she said i would give anything to see jason strike out, like i said, baseball season. how do we go through the experiences and not be changed? we are changed. those of you in the room who i asked to see your hands, those
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who i honored by being here today, you are veterans of our past and present service and proud families, they are all change. we as patriots and support them and have supported them through what is now law war are changed too. i hope there is one thing you take out of me today, the change is the whole point. change is what we are afraid of, what we dread and what we cling to, what we depend on when everything else is fleeting, change is what matters and the stories behind that change deserve to be told so together as a nation we can celebrate them, cry for them, learn from them and move on. i believe that is the reason i'm here with you today. there's almost always a reason. i hope that after today you as members of this very proud
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patriotic community will think of your service members and their brave families and maybe look at them with slightly different eyes. i hope that my words might encourage all of you to embrace your own story through all of this of patriotism, pride in your community and its long history and in one of there. most importantly in the role we all play in the long road ahead for our veterans. february of 2004 i deployed with the marine corps surgical co. to western iraq. at the time my was active duty in the navy and my babies were 15 months old. said goodbye to my family in florida and headed to camp pendleton where a ragtag group of us put our things together and headed to iraq. our job was to set up a mobile field hospital to care for the marines operating in the area and there were a lot of them. we had an air wing, infantry regiment and the huge combat
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support battalion. i was part of a four person combat stress platoon, myself, my psychiatrist partner and two and listed psychiatric technicians. together we were responsible for the mental health treatment and care of 10,000 u.s. marines. this was a long time ago, 2004. some of you will remember this year as the year in which both battles for volusia --fallujah were fought. i can say on behalf of medical personnel we could never have imagined or dreamed of the number of casualties we would see during that time. for the end of this challenging time i decided i was going to write this list of things that were good and bad about iraq. i think for me it was the beginning of what became a lot of writing as therapy and
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closure. for my colleagues in iraq this was hysterical, hysterically funny because as i told them i'm going to write a list. they said that will be the most lopsided list anyone has ever written. it was lopsided, true, but took the form of a poem and i sent it by e-mail to my husband who forwarded it to 25 people. by the time my returned to florida in september the list as recall that had literally been forwarded around the world and hundreds of e-mails were waiting for me. people who wanted to talk about it, that related to it. i have to say i was embarrassed, overwhelmed, i wasn't myself in 15 different ways and i didn't handle the attention very gracefully at first until i started hearing from viet nam era marines, korean war navy
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corpsman, nurses, marines even from world war ii who told me that the list made them remember and that remembering was ok and i was humbled. i thought i would share the poem as it is truly the beginning of my story and it appears many others as well. think that we are good. sunset over the desert almost always orange. sunrise over the desert almost always read. childlike excitement of having fresh fruit at dinner after going months without it. being allowed to be the kind of clinician i know i can be and want to be. with no limits placed and no doubt expressed. but most of all the united states marines, our patients, walking everyday and having every single person who passed by me say oorah, ma'am, telling
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me through blinding pain or morphine induced euphoria when can i get out of here, i just want to get back to my unit. meeting a young sergeant who lost an eye in an explosion asked a surgeon if he could open the other one. when he did he sat up and looked at the marine from his theme being treated in the other room, he smiled, laid-back down and said i only have one good eye but i can see that my marines are okay. and of course meeting the one i will never forget, the one who threw himself on a grenade to save the marines at his side, the first marine medal of honor recipient of the vietnam war. my friends, some of them are lifelong in a way that is indescribable. patients who had courage unlike anything i have never witnessed before my comrades in the
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surgical co. some of the things they went through will be with them forever but still they provided outstanding care to our marines day in and day out, sometimes for days at a time with no break for seven endless months and above all else holding the hand of that dying marine. things that were not good. camel fighters, poisonous scorpions, bats flopping around in the darkness, howling territorial wild dogs, flies that insisted on landon on our faces, giant looming mosquitos and invisible flies that carried leishmaniasis. 130 degrees wearing long sleeved hands and combat boots in 132 degrees, random and predictable power outages that led to sweating throughout the night. wedding in places i didn't know i could switch like wrists and years, the war of helicopters
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overhead, resounding thud of exploding artillery in the distance, popping of gunfire, not knowing if any of those sounds was a good thing or a bad thing, the siren and big boys yelling to take cover, cracking sound of giant artillery rounds splitting open against direct, the rumble of the ground shattering windows, hiding under flapjack and kevlar helmets away from a broken windows, waiting to be told we could come to the hospital. black helicopter with that big red cross on its side landing in our path. worse, watching gray marine helicopters landing at our pad because they were filled with patients and often we didn't know they were coming. assuring a sobbing marine colonel away from the trauma they and all you listen to is marines cry out in pain, meeting the 21-year-old corporal with three purple hearts and
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listening to him weep because he was ashamed of feeling afraid to go back. telling a roomful of stunned the marines in blood soaked uniforms that their comrade they had tried to save had died of his wounds. watching a lot of of the boots of one of our young nurses while she told me about one who died in the trauma they and the one she had to tell when he pleaded for the truth that his friend didn't make it. listening to another of our nurses tell of that marine who came in talking telling her his name, about how she pleaded with him not to give up. she could see his eyes the doll when he couldn't fight any longer. and finally above all else holding the hand of that dying marine. so i refer to him in the beginning, the baseball player, also the dying marine in the poem, says corporal jason bonham, came to the doors of the
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surgical company with a serious head injury. not many of you who live through something like this know that in combat medicine there is no at operation, his move to a place he or she can be given fluids, pain medication and support while that person dies. i met corporal dunham in our expecting room, held his hand and told him we were proud of him. we had no idea how proud we actually were. in what now looking back can only be a medical miracle his status >> reporter: and he began to squeeze my hand in response to my voice. he was medevaced, raise the helicopter crew to get him to baghdad and on to germany and he made it home to bethesda where his parents were waiting for him
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before he finally died of his wounds eight days after coming through our trauma day. that was april 22nd, 2004. it is almost nine years ago now but sometimes feels like yesterday and specifically when i'm texting with his mother about baseball, we later learned he had given his life to save the men in his squad by throwing his body over a live grenade. there was an embedded reporter with his unit. you remember we have all sorts of these reporters embedded. he came through our surgical co. to learn of our experience with him. later he told our story to jason's mother. it ends up that that is all she really hoped for when she heard he was critically injured, that someone was holding his hand. so she wrote to me that summer and she thanked me for doing the only thing she wanted to do but
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couldn't do. we remain very close ever since and in january of 2007 president bush posthumously awarded the congressional medal of honor to her son. than they invited me to be with them at the white house when the award was given, where i was proud to be the single sailor standing among 65 marines in dress blues. in recent years i have been privileged to attend with them the christening ceremony of the uss jason dunham, the navy's newest destroyer. i am so fortunate through all of this. i am not the only medical or religious personnel person from our services who has sat with a dying warrior on the battlefield but because of the really truly unique circumstances around all of this i know i maybe one of the only ones who has learned of his whole story because i have gotten to know his family.
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i consider them great friends and they are very cherished to me. she introduces people to me as her angel which is overwhelming that she believes he fought to stay alive because when i spoke to him he heard her, not me. i know we both need to believe that. so not the typical place for a psychologist. nothing about my people and involved typical places raise psychologists so what did i do in the midst of this? when i returned i ran away as many do after trauma. i left the navy, but clinical work altogether. i was hoping to find some peace. during that time rule number 2 was written by accident, it was written as therapy. a vietnam marine, retired colonel who has written several books about the marines in
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vietnam contacted me and said you need to write a book where every line in that poem is captured and i was very respectful since he is a colonel. i settled respect, absolutely not. i will not write another word about this experience. and you know what? wants a month he wrote me an e-mail and said what about that book? nine months after getting home and living through this they strange suffering that as a shrink i can the fine quite easily but as a person i didn't even realize i was going through. funny how that works. i finally wrote to him and said okay, what do i do? it is published not because of him. is published because of beth dunham who told me i should get it published. this whole thing is for fault. the most important part of all this is i learned exposure
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therapy works. with each story that i wrote it became progressively easier to write the words on a page and a route that time i decided it was time to go back to work with our wounded marines and i have been there ever since. it is where i belong really and i guess it is a unique opportunity to try to be one of the voices out there trying to convince people that it is okay to seek help for wounds no one can see. someone told me he feels like the country after this is in the midst of a slow-motion mass casualty. i have to say those words struck a chord with me. after being awakened many nights by pounding marines on the door waking us up, mass casualties, the words are a little different for me but it fits. in my humble opinion that is because it is based on one thing. i am hearing it over and over again from my patients, from
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those in audiences who ask questions in front of everybody come up later and speak to me, it is the sense that seems to be consistent across men and women, special forces, aviation, medical. we seem to have one thing in common and it is important for all of you as veterans, family members, as obvious members of the concerned community, it is important for you to know that some of our current and past service members feel alone. they feel there is no way anyone could ever understand how hard it is to admit that there is something wrong that no one can see. so the way ahead, to being healed and hole again although changed because we are all changed, we will all be moving
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through this together as a community. it is a validation. we provide validation for others in ways we don't even realize. as a health care provider to deploy long time ago and now appears from our current warriors and their families, please trust me on this. you matter to our country's veterans, to those members of your community, the family members and friends and co-workers in ways that you will never know. if you take an extra moment to validate whenever it is that person might be feeling, it is an extra 30 seconds to remind that person it is ok if you are not okay. to know for certain as you go forward that that one incident of locking eyes, a little extra time holding on to a handshake or a hug, you can validate that
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feeling of being alone and start a person on a path to healing. we do not need to the mental health providers to do that for one another. sometimes in those moments of comfort that might show up in what can be pretty chaotic in people's minds, those moments can be like changing. in closing i will tell you a couple other short stories about two of those moments for me. pitch black tent, the 14 women who call it home had different schedules so everyone agreed we would navigate by flashlight, my temporary caught was in the middle of the tent perpendicular to the rest of them. the other women had cavils and personal items such as those of husbands, children, navy seal boyfriends hanging over dare
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cox, the air-conditioner built into the side of the tent forced women to use thick blankets over their sleeping bad as at night. i lived out of my house pack for the ten days i worked there. nearby fallujah was burning and casualties were flowing too fast for the shock trauma platoon to keep up with them. two junior members of the team, mary and noel had only been in iraq two months but walked with the air of experienced critical care nurses. they also worked with chronic sleep deprivation. two marines came and awakened them. my third morning there. in a few days i had been there i have seen them catching an hour whenever they could. this particular night they hadn't slept one minute. qaddafi after eating breakfast i returned to the tent. was a hundred and the sun was warm in the air really fast. inside it was still cold and dark. a sensory deprivation chamber. i fumbled through my hat with a notebook when i saw a patients.
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at the side of the tent it was lifted allowing a flash of blinding light and dropped again. noel and maria entered silently. maria didn't take off her booth the collapse to her caught and held her blanket over her head. noel undressed in the corner of the tent and changed into slacks that said u.s. navy on the chest and right legs. she sat on her cot, sighed deeply and lowered her face to her hands. a few minutes later she came over. how are you, no, i ask quietly. we lost one on the table, she replied. very obvious fatigue in her voice. was she the first? yes. everyone is wasted but it probably wasn't about losing him as much as it was about the whole last couple of days. there are a couple patients i can't get out of my head, you know. i waited. a group of three came in, she said, with their corman. the captain was dead.
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he had been shot under one arm and out of the other. that corpsman could have used you. he had been applying pressure under the his captain's arms for a long time. didn't realize that guy bled out along time before we got him. he just sat there, the corpsman, staring into space. you wouldn't answer our questions or talk to anybody. that might be a good person for me to see, i said. is he still here? no, they took him back with them this morning. probably best, kicking the wooden floor of the tent looking at her flip-flop clad feet. another came in with him, a gunny, triple and beauty who lost one leg below the knee, one at the head and another below the elbow. he was amazing. she took a deep breath and exhales through pursed lips. things for getting tent for a while. the look on my face must have been stressed.
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i was running past him once trying to get some supplies and he said to me i felt horrible. i thought oh no, he needs more morphine and i have been so busy i missed it. i went over to him and said have you been okay? do you need anything? i need to ask you something. i leaned over him. how many irishman does it take to change a light bulb? she said i couldn't believe it. what did you just say? he said it is too serious in here. you people need to lighten up. he told jokes the entire time we worked in there, she said. it was like a stand-up routine. the lowlands and they came to get him and he waved at us with his one arm and gave us a thumbs up. we have been laughing so hard for the last half-hour we stood there like idiots and watched them loading him in. they set the hatch and the bird
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lifted off and it was like opening the floodgates. everyone started crying. a few people even fell to there needs. she rubbed her eyes. wonder how he is now. .. >> she smiled. well, apparently, it takes 21. one to hold the lightbulb, and the other 20 to drink until the room starts spinning. [laughter] so it turns out there's many stories i could have shares with you, and after speaking with my
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host last night, i understand this was even more appropriate for this audience than i thought. [laughter] because i guess there's a lot of irish-american folks here in savannah. so there you go, there's your joke for you for the day. it's interesting, because as i look back on sort of thinking about the stories to share with audiences, this one keeps coming forward. not because it's especially wonderful, which it is, and not because it may sound familiar to some of you. we all have these sort of life-changing moments. this man wasn't a gunny. i had to change everybody's ranks and injuries. he wasn't a triple amputee. i had to make people unidentifiable, right? for the book. um, and interestingly i have no idea, i had no idea what happened to him or anyone that we took care of. we had zero tracking system in place back in 2004. it's much better now. but these people came into our surgical company, and in many
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cases really touched us, and then we had no clue what happened. so the reason, though, to tell you that story is because in this particular case there's this part two. and i think it's a perfect description of exactly what i've a just been sort of talking with you about. if we keep our eyes open, if we allow ourselves to grow and change in a positive way after a traumatic experience, we see that life comes full circle. just like my little baseball player who's not so little anymore, and jason dunham's family. i got to see this gunny again. the book is associated with a terrific charity. it's called the semper fi fund, and it helps injured marines and corpsmen who have been with the marines. and a few years ago i was invited to a, um, party with the board of directors, and several of the fund's recipients. now, the director of the fund had given my book to all of the board of directors as well as these marines who have been
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given various types of assistance from the fund. and i walked into this restaurant, and i looked across the bar, and there he was. this gunny who wasn't a gunny. he was drinking a beer with one prosthetic hand, and his service dog's leash was wrapped around the other, and he was surrounded by women, and they were laughing. [laughter] so i knew it was him, of course, and i said to my husband who's a a marine, there's just no way i can go talk to that guy. and he said if you don't, you will regret it for the rest of your life. so i was so nervous, but i went over there, and i introduced myself, and i said i'm the author of that book that karen gave you. and he said, oh, that was of a good book. and i waited, kind of cringing. so finally i had to ask him, i said, well, what'd you think of your chapter? and he said, my chapter?
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and i said, i called it the irishman and the lightbulb? he said, but that guy was a gunny, i'm just a staff or sergeant. [laughter] so i explained how i had to change identities, how i promoted him, you know, i assured him that was definitely you. he took a long swig of beer, and he said, well, i'm going to need to reread it now. [laughter] i said, probably are. before i left him, though, i just said i need you to know something. those medical people at tq that night, they were exhausted. they were up to their knees in casualties, and they'd been working for three days straight. and you saved them. he looked at me for a second, and he said, see, that's just so funny. i always figured their saved me. so, ladies and gentlemen, it does not matter about which war we are talking.
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now i understand why people got in touch after reading the poem, even people from world war ii. i get it now. because across generations the whole point is still the same. when i was out in iraq, many of my marine patients kept telling me, docker you've got to watch -- doc, you've got to watch band of brothers. why in the world would i want to watch band of brothers while i'm out here in iraq? thank you, no. i did not watch it. i did get home, and someone gave it to me as a welcome home present, which is sort of strange. [laughter] anyway, there it sat on my bookcase wrapped in plastic for four years. and when you hear people speak of avoidance after trauma, that's a good example of avoidance after trauma. i finally did, though, get around to watching it. and now i understand why they wanted me to see it. there's a title of one of the episodes, it says why we fight.
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and that's what they were trying to tell me. they were just trying to tell me why they were fighting. and it's the same today as it always has been. it's for one another. it's for the people to our left and our right, and it always has been. so for all of you who have worn our country's uniform or supported a family member who did, thank you for your service. it will always mean a great deal to us. and for all of you now who are part of a really amazing community of patriotic energy and support, you can be a cohesive, supportive, protective role in the lives of your sons, daughters, neighbors, friends as they come home from the fight and give them what they need then going forward with the rest of the fight. for some of them, that stigma will be the greatest fight
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they've ever faced. you have the ability to give them permission to not be okay. to validate their sacrifice in a personal and heartfelt way that they will never forget. so if i may speak on behalf of all of them, thank you for your support of your veterans that we are all so proud of. you matter to them. you matter to us. thank you very much. [applause] thank you. thank you. thank you very much. [applause] >> of course, very happy to, very happy to take questions.
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>> [inaudible] >> i think, yeah, i think we need the microphone. i'd love to hear your question, sir. >> i hope i'm not the only person here who doesn't know this, but what is rule one, and what is rule twosome is. >> oh, my goodness. what a great question. i planted him. [laughter] so do i have any m.a.s.h. fans in here? oh, yeah. i grew up watching m.a.s.h.. best show ever. no show will ever come close. rule number two and rule number one came from the first season of m.a.s.h. in a wonderful episode in which hawkeye loses a person on the table who he knew from high school, and henry, his commanding officer, says to him the only thing i know is that there's two rules of war. rule number one is that young men die, and rule number two is that doctors can't change rule number one.
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any other questions? >> do you have any insights into the alarming and tragic phenomena of the number of suicides in veterans which we all are becoming familiar with? just anything at all you could tell that could be changed or whatever? thank you. >> yeah. you know, i think this is one of these things that the good news is that all the services take it so incredibly seriously. i've had the opportunity to speak at a few flag-level conferences for the navy and the marines, and truly at the four-star level this is, like, number one and number two priorities of these guys, even above what you would think would be, you know, missions and that sort of thing. it's truly alarming, as you say. the bottom line as far as we can tell is that this still comes down to the stigma that i was referring to. that there is still even with all of the advances that we've made in working to make it okay
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to get treatment and help, there's still a true stigma amongst many of our war fighters around admitting that they need help for these, these wounds. they're truly injuries, and that's the way we're trying to push it forward is this is not a mental illness, this isn't something that makes you sick. it's an injury. it's something that happened to a healthy person, and treatment works. so there's really a push to try to change the way people think about this. but this needs to happen in the mid levels of all of our services, that mid-level leadership also puts that type of message out. and i think this is going to be decades before that actually is the case. i think the, unfortunately, the suicide rate is a direct reflection of that, of people just not feeling that they have anywhere to turn, that they can't ask for help. so, again, one by one we can change that. yes, sir. right behind you.
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>> yeah. my father served in the second world war, and i was worn in 1946 -- i was born in 1946, and he would never answer any questions about his service. and all we knew was he brought home a trunk full of nazi flags and some nazi swords and that he'd been in the artillery. recently i have done some research on what he actually, where he was and what he was doing, and it sounds horrific just on the paper record. and my brothers and i have recently found some photos he brought back that shows that he was at one of the death camps early on and so forth. >> wow. >> what i'm wondering is whether anybody has done any study of this phenomenon you're talking about and how it was unaddressed with world war ii veterans. and what i'm really trying to figure out is how do you, how do i get into the mind of this father who was totally silent about it through his life? >> right.
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there is a lot of interest in the world war ii, um, generation of veterans because, as you say, they were very -- as a whole, they were very silent about their service. and yet there seems to be this thought that many of them were actually quite functional, went on to live very functional lives and, you know, seemed to do okay. you know, sort of on the surface at least. and there's a couple different theories. obviously, one is that there was just that still that stigma, there was no, no possibility of receiving help. that just didn't exist, you didn't do it. it was what did they call it back then -- >> [inaudible] >> battle fatigue, but even before that it was like a soldier's heart or something? it was something that made it sound like you were weak, like if you had a soldier's heart -- yeah. so it was even, it's, the names have evolved. but they started off extremely, um, sort of prejudicial, you know? that it was -- so i think there
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was certainly that. but then there's also this thought that maybe because many world war ii people came home on ships together. they had sometimes months to actually be with people who got it and decome press some of what they lived through. and perhaps that may have been a true protective factor formany of them despite the horror which is, as you say, unfathomable. despite that, if he came home with another group of people who got it, who understood him, who didn't judge him, who knew what he lived through, wholied -- who lived through something similar, they were able to debrief and sort of move through a lot of the process together. that's one theory. it's sort of why this whole generation of people who lived through something so bad seemed to generally do okay. the other theory, of course, is
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that they just refused to talk about it and refused to let it bother them and refused to do it. it just wasn't an option. i like the first theory better, because i think it actually makes some sense. now our veterans are home, you know, 12 hours after they were in iraq, they're home, and it's just really shocking. >> could the difference also have been that the way they were welcomed home? >> could have been. the country was obviously -- >> there were parades, they were revered. >> right. >> you came home from vietnam, you were shunned. >> that's right. and certainly the country's involvement during world war ii has to also have been protective. the entire country was part of the fight. and so that, clearly, has to have been protective. vietnam, no doubt about it, the
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country's disinvolvement and even hostility towards those that fought is clearly an additional risk factor for our vietnam veterans. no doubt about that. no doubt about that. >> [inaudible] the difference between a draft and a volunteer early? >> sure. >> [inaudible] >> sure. >> [inaudible] >> right. right. there's some different thoughts on that. but, yeah, theoretically when you're volunteering to do it, this is something you're choosing to do, and there should be a different way of thinking about it. yeah. i don't think anyone's ever come to a true consensus on the draft situation. but, yeah, you're right. that's certainly a different factor as we've looked at different wars. >> hi. this question may be frivolous, but i'm curious. i'm the grandmother of twin 1-year-old boys, and i want to know who watched your children.
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[laughter] >> well, that's a great question. their grandmother was part of that. my parents, actually, left their home in sacramento and came and lived with my husband in florida to help him and, obviously, that was a great comfort to me to know that they would always be with someone who adored them. unfortunately, it was tough on their relationship with my husband. [laughter] it still hasn't -- that's one of the casualties of our war. [laughter] yeah. not so so good. [laughter] but i think having them there was clearly helpful. and my husband was out of the marines by then. and so he, he was there. he was working, but he was there which is, was a good thing, clearly, for me knowing that their father was there but was not good for him because as a marine hairier pilot, he was the one who was supposed to be heading over there, not me. he was better suited to go, not
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me. we agreed on that. there was a lot of what we call in the biz cognitive dissonance. none of that made sense. and it was really a sense of -- it was almost like he resented me for going. he had flown for 12 years and never got the chance to actually, you know, blow open a path for infantry marines to go through which was what he was supposed to do in that airplane. so it was a challenge for us. but the good news is the kids had all sorts of support. [laughter] and they were really what mattered the most to me. >> this is back to the question of what do we do with an individual coming back who has these internal wounds, and it would -- it seems to me that when you are learning how to fight for your country, you're basically told to suck it up.
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and you live with that psychology and that protects you and that gives you the courage, if you will, to go on and do horrendous things. then suddenly to dismiss all of that and lead them, that is where probably the problem lies. how do you make that transition. what you mentioned about being op the ship for -- on the ship for a time and you watch ncis or something, and they address this kind of a problem where people come home, and they don't know how to relate to the people that they left behind. >> right. >> so is this one of those serious issues about individually trying to take away what you had to know to go in to fight to do these things and replace it with therapy? >> to some extent.
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although the attempt to change the way we think about these wounds as injuries instead of illness is an attempt to try to make the this akin to a badly-sprained ankle. and so whenever i get my chance to talk to a big group of marines or sailor, i say, okay, everybody knows what it looks like when you sprain your ankle, what it feels like, right? it's swollen, it's bruise 3, it -- bruised, it hurts to walk. and everyone knows what you should do to take care of that ankle, right? everybody knows you should get off of it, put some compression, take some ice, maybe take vitamin m -- motrin. [laughter] and so we all know this. and then i say to them, okay, just go with me for a second. what if you don't have time? what if you're embarrassed? you leaf the boot -- you leave the boot laced up real tightly and you do crazy things you shouldn't do in boots, but
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that's a whole different lecture. so you stay on it. you walk on it for weeks, months, long time. is it possible no one will know how badly sprained your ankle is? well, sure. yeah, you could fake it pretty good. and then someday i tell them even you have to take a shower. so you take the boot off, now what does your ankle look like? oh, boy. that does not hook good. and you don't have to be a corpsman to know there's something wrong with that ankle, right? by the time that happens. it looks like a bowling pall on the end of your leg. so you get sent to the doc, and then the doc gets sent to the physical therapist. is and then i tell them what if the therapist gives you some exercise and things to do, and you are a patient patient, and you do exactly what that person tells you. is it possible that you end up with a stronger, more flexible, more resilient ankle at the end? and they all have to admit, yeah, it's probably possible.
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meanwhile, i'm watching like lightbulbs kind of coming up on top of all these heads in the audience. and, of course, the punchline is this is no different. normal person, injury, signs that we recognize, an attempt to cover them up. a moment when you can't cover it up anymore and treatment. same thing. so this is what we're trying to push forward, this idea so that, hopefully, it doesn't have to be something that's counter to what you learned. what you learn is you've got to be healthy in order to help your unit. same thing goes with this. so that's what we're hoping. it's being taught at the very junior level, and we're trying to, you know, move that quickly through the ranks. we'll see how it goes. so far at least i think on the junior side it's accepted that way. on the very senior side, it's definitely accepted that way. because they know, those guys know, the leadership, we've got to keep these guys healthy. so i think, i hope that will be the case. feel free to use the ankle
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analogy if you ever need to. [laughter] one more question, i'm told. anyone? no pressure. it doesn't have to be a great question. [laughter] we've got one here and, okay. can we have two more? we have one right there. all right, sir, you're next. >> hi. i had a son that recently came back from afghanistan that's a double amputee. i'm very proud of him and admire his courage, but now he wants to go back and, honestly, i think he's crazy. can you explain -- i know this happens a lot where they just want to go back, and they've given so much already. can you explain this mindset to me? >> uh-huh. actually, there's this workshop we give for folks where they're returning, there's the title of a seminar, why i want to go back. it's very common. i even felt it, too, as much as, you know, really? but you do. because there's a sense of knowing what you're doing, there's a sense of real competence in combat.
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everything's very black and white. your role is very clear, what's expected of you is very clear. there's no additional stuff going on. it's just you and your unit and what you have to do. and there's that, that's really nice. it's very simple. and i think that when you get back and there's all sort of all the different pieces that are floating around with family and the future and your injuries and everything, it srt of starts to feel really complicated. and so they yearn for the simplicity where everything was simple. in addition, some people become true adrenaline junkies. i have to fight with a lot of my patients about their 100 mile-an-hour motorcycle riding. come on, man, you're killing me here, you know? but they feel, they tell me they don't feel alive, that they felt alive in combat. that was alive. this, you know? so we have to work on sort of increasing pleasurable activities in their lives and realizing it's never going to look like that again. it's never going to feel like that again.
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but that's good. because here in savannah, georgia, you shouldn't feel like that. right? that shouldn't -- that's just a, that's just a very spsk feeling, and we don't really want that again. so i think it's very normal. and there are actually a fair amount of amputees that are returning to active duty and even deployment. it would be a different role, potentially, than what he was in, but it's possible. you know, hopefully he'll move through his transition as well and kind of see where he can contribute to the army? yeah. where he can contribute to the army or to his community in a different way and still find pleasure and joy from that. our last question is here. this gentleman here. in the hat. in the blue hat. everyone's pointing at him. [laughter] >> hi. i'm a psychiatrist, and i've treated many veterans from vietnam to the present.
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one of the problems i have with what you've said, though, is that there's a marked difference between the normalcy that most people experience and the horrors of war. people in the military in wars see things, do things and experience things that normal people have no idea what they are. >> that is true. >> and it's very difficult for those two groups to understand each other because people who haven't experienced it have no idea what it's like, and people who are experienced it don't understand why the people who haven't experienced it don't understand it. >> right. >> so they live in very, two different worlds. >> exactly right. >> in which the military world is almost like a netherworld where they're experiencing things that are, you've said, that are horrendous, you know,
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that are exhausting, that go beyond anything. >> yep. >> and normal people don't know how to relate to that. and so there's tremendous difficulty in getting back into the normal world because their world will never again be normal. >> no. well, you're absolutely right about that. there's no doubt. and when you say the problem with what i said, you mean as far as supporting, trying to support people one person at a time, or -- is that what was, you were addressing? >> um, yeah. my specialty for many years was treating traumatic brain injuries. so i understand your analogy about the injuries versus illness very well. but the problem with your swollen ankle is that nonmilitary people, they've had swollen ankles also -- >> right, right. >> but they've never seen their neighbor jump on a grenade and be exploded all over the room. >> sure. >> we think, oh, it was exploded, but they don't understand tissue and blood and,
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you know, body parts -- >> with right. >> -- flying. so they can relate to the idea of a swollen ankle, but they can't relate to the military experience. >> okay, i do -- >> so in that way it's very different. >> i understand. and perhaps your point is that as a, as connective story the swollen ankle is a difficult one to use. potentially true. i use it with military guys to try to break the stigma, but, yeah, i see your point. i think what this comes down to is just connection of human beings, and we will -- people who haven't lived through it will never understand it, and i think admitting that to someone is huge. i hear that from my guys a lot that when they see a doctor or a nurse or even just have someone who's concerned that's trying to help, it's very important to make some comments such that i have no idea what you've lived there, and i would never you said it, but i'm right here if you want to take me along. whatever it was, it's okay. i'm still here. you know, that kind of a general
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acceptance can be really helpful. but, yeah, you're -- i know what you're trying to say, doc. yes, sir. >> [inaudible] there are those of us who have been to combat, come back and -- [inaudible] >> right. he didn't say people weren't normal, he said their experience is so out of the realm of normal compared to living here in savannah day to day. >> i heard him say -- >> oh, i don't think he meant that. no, no, no, i didn't hear that at all. i think what he meant was the experience, what sort of our -- the typical american live anything savannah is living. we would call maybe that's a normal day is going to work, going to the grocery store, going to school, that might be what we define as normal, and then what you live there i in combat is just so very different. so, perhaps, just a different way of defining what we've lived through. what you've lived through. it's very different than what
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your neighbors have lived through if they've never gone to war. i think we're probably done, aren't we? because we, actually, went over. [laughter] okay. thank you all very much. [applause] sorry. >> thank you so much. no, you didn't go over. that was wonderful. thank you so much for coming. if you'd like to see dr. kraft in person and have her sign a book, in the tent in the square, telfair square, and before you get away, rock legend gregalman is also -- allman is also signing his memoir, "my cross to bear," until 2:00. thank you for coming. [inaudible conversations] >> you're watching booktv on c-span2, and this is live coverage from the sixth annual
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savannah book festival in georgia. our live coverage will continue in about an hourment -- hour. >> it's presidents' day weekend, and booktv has expanded our coverage in from now until tuesday at 8 a.m. eastern. today booktv is live from savannah, georgia. our coverage of the savannah book festival ends at 5 p.m. eastern but reairs tonight at midnight. visit for a complete schedule. then at 6 an encore presentation of "week notes" with -- "book notes." mr. philpott's book tells the story of jim thompson, a man known as america's longest-serving p.o.w. at 1 p.m. sunday akbar ahmed
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talks about his bar, the thistle and the drone: how america's war on terror became a global war on tribal islam, follows by jennifer lawless, author of "becoming a candidate: political ambition and the decision to run for office." c-span's new series, first ladies: influence and image, premieres at 9 p.m. eastern on monday. in honor of that series, we bring you mary brennan, author of "pat nixon," at 2:30 on sunday. then at 7 p.m., rachel swarns in her book, "american tapestry." for more information on the first ladies' series, visit on monday booktv continues our programming with lawrence wright on scientology, michelle alexander on the new jim crow, max boot on guerrilla warfare and jonathan katz on haiti aid, just to name a few. watch these programs and more
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all weekend on booktv. for a complete schedule, visit here's a look at some books that are being published this week. earnest free berg, humanities professor at the university of tennessee, recounts how thomas edison's invention of the lightbulb in 1879 transformed the united states. in "the age of edison: electric light and the invention of modern america." in "the terror courts," jess bravin reports on legal issues surrounding the prosecution of alleged terrorists by military or commissions. former boston global reporters dick lar and gerard to kneel recount the life of whitey bulger, fbi informant in "whitey: the life of america's most notorious mob boss." david shambaugh, professor of
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political science and international affairs at george washington university examines china's growing economic influence in the global marketplace. marguerite hold toway, director of science and environmental journalism at columbia recalls the career of john randall jr., accredited -- [inaudible] for manhattan in "the measure of manhattan: the tumultuous career and surprising legacy of john randall jr. " look for these titles in bookstores this coming week and watch for the authors in the near future on booktv and on >> up next, dakota meyer talks about the 2009 battle of gong gal in afghanistan and his efforts to rescue u.s. and afghan soldiers who were ambushed. for his angsts, mr. meyer became the first living marine to receive the medal of honor since the vietnam war. this is about 45 minutes.
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[inaudible conversations] >> well, i'd like to welcome everybody. of this is my more official welcome. we're honored to have you all here today. i'm denny cummings, chairman of the union league club authors' group, and what a thrill to have sergeant meyer here today. it's -- and to have all of you here today. we have a couple of tables from are our american legion post right here. you might just wave so everybody knows who you are. and very active american legion post, i should say. one other thing i want to mention is each of you have a card at your place that looks something like this. several years ago we began a program called support the troops just to see how it would go. it started in our library. we would have a speaker from the military typically, and the idea
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was to have those who are in attendance bring things that we could then send to the troops. so whether it was books or dvds or cds or even ipods, um, batteries, some of the things that they'd let us know that they needed, and we collected a few boxes and something for the troops. each year it's gotten bigger and bigger and bigger. and i think last year we sent over 300 boxes to the troops, and we collected a lot of money which, of course, if you come to the event and you haven't brought a set of batteries, you don't need to feel bad because we have, like, $25 bags, $50 bags, $100 bags, $40,000 bags if you want to bring that. and we'll fill them full of things that they need. so that's on november 8th starting at 6:00, and you'll see here who our speakers are, and they are equally spectacular. so i hope you'll come and bring
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whatever you can. bring that big check that we're talking about. one last thing that i'll say, and that is if you have a cell phone, this would be an appropriate time to turn that off so there are no interruptions, and we will have cards -- i don't know if we have them yet at the tables, but we'll have cards in the event that you have questions. and we'd appreciate it if you'd fill out those cards, and they'll be collected and handed to me so that we can just then get them up to sergeant meyer. all right. i'd like to introduce to you really important partner for this event. this is the first time we've partnered with leading authorities, and we couldn't be more thrilled. so i'm going to introduce to you mike baron who's going to tell you a little about leading authorities. mike? >> thank you, deppny. appreciate it. good afternoon.
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i'm mike bair on, i'm the senior vice president with leading authorities here in chicago. first, i would just like to thank the union league club for partnering with us on this event. it's the first event we're working on, and i hope this is going to be the first of many. we're really excited about the event today, and i just wanted to tell you a little bit about us, and then we'll introduce dakota for sure. we're a speakers' bureau design firm here in chicago. if any of you have meetings, events, things like that where you're looking to program that, that's what we do. and we've been partnering with different organizations throughout the city to kind of showcase some of the speaking talent that's out there helping organizations, trade associations and corporations right now speak to their members and employees and families and things like that. so i have a couple colleagues with me, matt jones is at the first table, and ned there. so if you have any needs, come see us afterwards. we'd love to talk to you. so today i have the pleasure of introducing sergeant dakota meyer. he's a marine corps veteran and
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the recipient of the medal of honor, the military's highest honor. he's the first living marine to have received the medal since 1973. when marines went missing after being ambushed, meyer defied his orders in order to save his comrades. president barack obama awarded meyer the medal of honor on december 15, 2011. meyer was also inducted into the hall of heroes at the pentagon and honored with a parade. since then meyer has raised more than a million dollars to help send the children of wounded marines to college. and finally, as you have all seen, he is the author of "into the fire: a firsthand account of the most extraordinary battle in the afghan war." leading authorities is very proud to exclusively represent dakota meyer, and now i want to show you a video to hear more about dakota and his story. thank you. ♪ >> it's kind of frustrating because, you know, everyone wants to get an interview about
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the worst day of your life. >> it was a straightforward mission that then-21-year-old sergeant dakota meyer had been assigned that day. meyer waited anxiously by the vehicles as his team began their parol of the village on foot. as they approached, all hell l broke loose. more than 50 insurgents fired from positions on mountains surrounding the valley and from within the village. back at the vehicles, meyer heard the firing and could see into the valley. the volume of fire increased, and the radio traffic grew increasingly desperate. wounded but steadfast in his decision, sergeant meyer entered the kill zone four times, swapping out guns and trucks and rescuing his trapped and wounded comrades with each run. >> dakota's the kind of guy who gets the job done. in so doing, he has earned our nation's highest military decoration, the medal of honor and we are extraordinarily proud of sergeant dakota meyer.
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>> medal of honor recipients are often called the bravest of the brave. as the first living united states marine to receive the honor in 41 years, sergeant meyer is only the third living recipient since the vietnam war. >> i'll accept the award on behalf of the guys that died, on behalf of the guys who have passed before, on behalf of the marines and the men and women who are still there fighting every day. >> today sergeant meyer has dedicated his time to raising awareness and money to benefit the children of fallen marines. he has also issued a challenge to america to match his efforts with the goal of raiding an additional $1 million for this cause. he also wrote: "into the fire." leading authorities would like to thank our co-host, the union league club of chicago, for its generous support of today's program. humble, courageous and determined, ladies and gentlemen, please welcome sergeant dakota meyer. [applause] >> thank you.
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thank you so much. thank you. [applause] thank you so much. so i've got a question. do you think that i could, like, when i go out and use a reference, do you think i could show that video where the prime minister says dakota meyer's the kind of guy that gets the job done, would it get me a job? [laughter] i'd like to start off thanking the union league club, leading authorities for helping me get out to crowds and share my story of the men and women who have served. and i want to thank all of you for showing up and giving me the support. i really appreciate it. so i'd like to start off with the question of why am i here
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today, why am i standing in front of you and getting ready to give you all a speech? because i have to say, as a 24-year-old high school-educatedder is cent -- sergeant in the marine corps, this is not where i would expect myself to be standing right now. you know, but i want to thank you all again for the opportunity to let me do this. so by now everyone in here has heard of me. whether you know me as a small town guy or as sergeant dakota meyer, you've more than likely in some way, shape or form heard of me by now. it all started off, i was a typical high school student, 17 years old, and i was walking through my lunchroom. you know, i knew everything back then. and i was walking through, and a marine recruiter was sitting in the back corner, and he had his dress blues on. i'm telling you, this guy could have been president of the united states. and i started asking him a lot of smart aleck questions, you know, what's this for? how'd you get that? oh, well, i can hit a deer at 100 yards, not impressing him at
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all. so he took it for a minute, and he said, you know, so what are you going to do when you get out of high school? and i looked back at him acting tough, puffed my chest out, i said, well, i'm going to go play football somewhere. and he said, yeah, that's exactly what i would do, too, because there's no way you'd ever make it as a marine,. [laughter] so quickly i realized -- i guess that's what they're supposed to do. quickly, i realized i'd set myself up. i went back to my classroom, and i came back. and for those of you that don't know me, i don't take a challenge very easily, and i definitely don't take no very easily, and if you were one of my commanders, you'd know that for a fact. so i went back to my room, and i started thinking about it. and i was thinking about what the recruiter had done, and he had challenged me. so i was a bargainer. i left my room and said, you know what? if you'll pack your stuff up right now, i'll sign the papers expecting him to say we can't do it today. he said, all right, let's go. so i didn't tell my father. we went up to elizabethtown,
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signed the paper, we came back, and we're sitting -- the only thing standing in my way now was my father's signature s. so we're sitting in my living room -- actually, at my kitchen table. and my dad walks in, and i'm sitting there, and he goes what have you done now? i said, dad, i want to go to the marine corps. i've decided. he said, you were going to play football yesterday. i said, i'm ready to go. have you really thought about this? yeah. the hour drive up there and back, i'm ready to go. [laughter] so now i'm enlisted in the marine corps on june 18, 2006, is a date that i will never forget. i shipped off the paris island, and this is where i would spend my 18th birthday. happy birthday, right? but it's not really as bad as the next three birthdays i had because my 19th birthday i was in sniper school hell week, my 20th birthday i was in hell week of sniper school mountain training in bridgeport, california, so i had a lot of good birthdays. but following paris island, i
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shipped off to camp geiger, north carolina, where i completed infantry training. and then after that i went off to hawaii where i would be stationed for the next four years. and this is where i also attended sniper school. so after attending sniper school, i quickly shipped off to iraq. and in iraq i didn't get to complete my tour because i was bitten on my right hand by a vicious enemy spider, and i actually suffered severe nerve damage. but i want to know everyone in this room know that the enemy will stop at nothing. they even train their spiders to bite us. [laughter] so i returned back home for two years of additional training and working up and trying to get my hand back, and this this is where i became a sniper team leader in charge of five other marines. and we were out in mojave viper training up to go back to iraq when my gunnery sergeant walkedded in and said we need five volunteers to go to afghanistan. and i said, well, what's the mission? he said we don't know yet, we
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need five volunteers right now. so i raised my hand and said, all right, i'm ready to go. so i ended up being assigned to a small team of advisers, and we were going to act as advisers to the afghan national army. and this is different because it's not normal missions of going over with conventional forces and being around americans and this and that, you know? we wouldly with two marines, one navy corpsman -- three marines, one navy corpsman and 80 afghans on a navy base. you want to talk about complete culture shock, i got one. we did everything with these afghans from eating to drinking to building volleyball courts to mission planning to hearing about their stories of their lives. and it really helped us become a solid unit, and we learned to depend on one another and rely on one another. and i want to talk about the afghans later on because of what the current events are. but i have to tell you one of the best lessons i think this taught me was, is not to look at the world and not to judge people by their religion, their
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skin color, their financial status or anything like that, but to accept them for who they are. i'm guilty of having what i like to call the small town complex. coming from a small town, i've got it. but it's where you think your world's only this big and that's how it is because that's what you were taught. i'm 24, and i know that's not the case anymore. but really, i mean, we always do that. we as humans are so fast to judge one another without really getting to know one another for what they are. so i definitely think it's something we could all take, take to and listen to. so anyways, we were stationed in northeastern afghanistan in a place called as jr. man, it's in the kunar province right on the pakistan border. and this is where i would be stationed with lieutenant john sovereign, gunnier is cent -- expubl and doc leighton. doc leighton was a navy corpsman, but they might as well be marines, so i'm going to cull him a -- call him a marine from
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here on out. [applause] so part of my opportunity was getting to meet these guys and getting to develop our team. because this was a group of guys that i would eventually learn to call my brothers. because when adviser teams are put together, the brass just picks different skill sets, ranks, throw 'em in a team to go over and advise. they don't ever ask about personalities or anything like that. they just put you in there and expect you to get along. because when i met these guys, they were totally different than me. i was the only infantryman in the group, and we're a breed of our own, to say the least. so i didn't really care about them at the time. i was just so excited of the thought of me getting to go to afghanistan and get in a fight. so it didn't really matter to me. but what i learned more and more every single day is that these guys are the most important people in my life. each of us shared a responsibility to take care of one another and to support one another and to protect one another.
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it didn't take long before all the personality differences just melted away. and they were without a doubt my brothers. and there was never any doubt in my mind that they were willing to sacrifice their life at a moment's notice just as i was for them. and in the end, they proved it. my whole team sacrificed their or lives not just for me, but for all of us in this room. so some of you know the details that unfolded that day on september 8, 2009. so we were running a mission in a village in a valley. this is the only mission, the only mission planning they took me out and replaced me with a gunnery sergeant. now, gunny j. was a big guy, he looked like a typical marine, and a fitness guru. he loved crossfit, and he always led the workouts of the day, and i can tell you i always hated it. gunny j. was going to take my spot, and for what reason i still ask today. my assignment was to sit back in
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a secure position with all the vehicles while my team entered the valley which i was uncomfortable with, but being an e4 in the united states marine corps, you really don't have much of an option but to follow orders. so the mission was to enter the village and secure a town meeting because the village elders had came to us and said they were going to renounce themselves from the taliban. and this is how i believe we win the war, for what it's worth. i believe that by lowering the supporters of the taliban and by that and stopping their freedom of movement, we win the war and stop terrorism. so that's what we were trying to do on this mission. but almost immediately upon entering the village, my team was under attack. it was an ambush, and it was big. it didn't take me long to realize that it wasn't a normal ambush. i've been in quite a few fire fights by this time, but it's like at the first of any fire fight it's kind of like the dust comes in, you try to figure out any situation, the dust comes in, you figure it out, and then
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your training kicks in, and you just start doing your job after about 10 or 15 minutes. but not in this fight. it was like one thing after another started to fail us. and everything started to fall like a house of cards. everything that we relied on in every other fire fight to support us wasn't happening. it was like our mission was falling quickly like a house of cards. and the enemy was seeing it, and they were taking full advantage of it. after some period of time, myself and my driver, staff sergeant rodriguez chavez, were sitting in the vehicle, and we figured out we had to do something. we couldn't just sit back and watch anymore. so we requested to go in four times. and each time we were told no. and we finally looked at each other and said, you know what? we've got to go in because that's what brothers do for one another. and we knew as soon as we were going on our own program that if the situation wasn't as bad as we thought it was, we were going
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to have to answer for it. but i can tell you this, i would rather be here answering the consequences for my team being alive today and it not being as bad as it was than to be standing here today knowing that i didn't do anything because i was worried about myself and my team be dead. but as we were going in, i hear lieutenant johnson over the radio start calling in a support artillery mission. and he starts calling in, and with the format we're taught to do, he calls it spot on. it's perfect. and the response he got back was his grid location was too close to the village. he said, if you don't give me these rounds right now, we're going to die. and the response back was, well, try your best. a few minutes later i hear the gunnery sergeant come over the radio, and he said he had to call in a medical evacuation. he was trying to give a grid, and he kept getting cut off because of the radio traffic going over the radio.
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with his frustrated voice he finally said get off the radio, i'm trying to get a grid for the medevac. so he started pulling out his coordinates, and i start writing on the humvee. i can locate his position on the map, go straight to him, and i can find where my missing team is. with my sharpie in my hand, he got his first three grids out, and then he stopped. and that was the last time i ever heard from my teammates. after six more hours of evacuating out after began soldiers -- afghan soldiers and wounded marines and searching for the missing guys, a helicopter spotted their lifeless bodies in a trend. and when i got to them, i immediately knew they were all gone, but it's like i didn't want to face it. surely it can't be all of them. this can't be true. so i checked each one of them for a pulse only to confirm what i already knew. and they all fell together doing their jobs as they had sworn to do the day that they enlisted in
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the military, as every man and woman does when they enlist. they paid the ultimate sacrifice. and the details that day are difficult for me to communicate to, but i'm sure you get the scene now. so now my actions of that day have been recognized as outstanding and courageous. but for me, to be honest, it's only the exact opposite. because we live by the words you never leave a fallen marine behind, or you get them out alive, or you die trying. and if you didn't die trying, well, it's simple, you didn't try hard enough. and i was just doing what my brothers or any other marine would have done for me. and now i've been honored by our country and the president of the united states, and i stand before you as a medal of honor recipient. so after hearing how i see, how i view the medal of honor and the situation, how i feel about it, i'm sure you can now see why i have struggles with the medal of honor. i've been called an american hero, but i want to tell you if
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this is what it feels like to be an american hero, you can have it. i'm not a hero. they are. so i decided that that day can i would accept the medal of honor on behalf of all the marines, on behalf of all the men and women serving and on behalf of all the men and women who have sacrificed so much for our country and all the families who have done so much as well. because i am just one of thousands of marines who would have done the exact same thing put in that situation. and all the credit goes to my family and the marine's oath to never leave a fallen man behind. i always refer to it as the opportunity i was given. because like i said earlier, i truly believe any man or woman who stands up and raises their right hand to go sacrifice and put their life on hold for our country would have done the exact same thing being in the situation that i was. i was just given the opportunity to perform my duty. so from the time of the conflict, it was over two years before the medal of honor was awarded. and during that time not a single day passed that i wasn't
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caught with the thoughts of frustration, guilt, anger, you know, the what if questions. we've all been through it. i live with the pain of trying to figure out what could i have done different, why had i somehow survived? why was i given the opportunity to live? why them and not me? and the truth is that every day i still ask those exact same questions. and i decided that i can take this opportunity to grow, and i could take this opportunity to educate, and i could take this opportunity to lead. and i want to share the opportunity with groups just like you of the reality that unfolded on september 8, 2009. because it has forever changed my existence in life. so now this part of my life, going around and meeting america, that's what i call it: meeting america. i mean, just imagine being 24 years old on a construction site one day to having the president call you on your cell phone after you tried to miss it
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numerous times to tell you that you'd be receiving the medal of honor and be a national figure overnight. let me say something, don't envy me. so now everyone in america is watching every single move that i make, and remembering that i'm 24 years old is way out of the question. [laughter] talk about pressure and stress. that goes back to it's bigger than me. so you know what? i gotta tell you, i'm tired of looking at notes, i'm just going to tell you how i really feel. so i look at everything, the president called me. it all started off, the president called me on my cell phone, and i got told, a marine came in and said, you know what, dakota? you're going to start -- you're getting ready to receive the medal of honor, we need to start planning for it. and if planning for a wedding is like this? i'm out for getting married. [laughter] we started planning for this, and i told him, you know what? i don't want the medal. i don't feel like i deserve the medal. so i started bargaining with
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him. let's break it down to a navy cross, we'll call it even, and i can go back and fight. so he said, but that's not going to happen. so the president called me on my construction site one day, and i was talking to him, and i said you know what, sir? will you, please, not give me the medal of honor, because i am nothing but a failure. please do not do this to me. and he said, you know what, dakota? it's bigger than you. it's bigger than me. so i started thinking about that, and i really get frustrated because i'm like, bigger than me? is this the best answer you can give me, bigger than me? you're about to mess my whole life up. [laughter] so thinking about it, you know, i went through the frustrations of drinking every day, drinking an average of a bottle of crown a day, you know, the frustration, the guilt, and i started thinking about it, and i look down at my wrist, and i wear the bracelets with all four names of my guys on them. and i looked down, and i said,
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you know what? why am i feeling this way? why am i so frustrated? why am i not taking advantage of my life? and when i started thinking about it that way, i said i'm not feeling sorry for those guys because they're in a better place, i'm just feeling sorry for myself. and i need to take advantage and go ahead and start making my life better and live life to the fullest. and with that i've came up with my own theory. [laughter] so you can imagine what this is going to be. [laughter] so i came out of the marine corps, and i wanted to make it so much different. i'm out of the marine corp., and just like a lot of marines do, we get out, we're frustrated with how the marine corps is, how you're trained and stuff, but i look at it as the marine corps as a whole has probably the best setup that i've ever seen. and you can apply it to everything in life. because, no offense to the other branches of service, but you know how the marines are. they hold themselves to a high
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standard. we nitpick at each other over the smallest things, over a haircut. you've got to get one every two weeks, but we do this because in the marine corps we have made a culture to where we will accept nothing less than being the best. we've dictated a culture to where we want to hold each other accountable to where we will succeed. now, are we really better? are we really the few, the proud? who knows. i mean, it's just an ego thing, it doesn't matter. but what we've done is we've made a culture to where we will accept nothing less than being the best. so inside that we have two things; opportunities and accountabilities. now, everyone in here will agree with me on every day we're presented with situations that aren't always favorable, and we don't have control of them, right? so with those situations you can either look at them as situations, but i started looking at them as opportunities s. and maybe you look at me and you say, dakota, not everything in life is an opportunity. well, i'll use the worst case
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she their or owe. i use the worst case scenario of a family member getting sick or dying. .. >> some of them are good, some of them are bad, and some of them are crazy.
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i like to say that the afghan people were as close to me as any of the marines. i still keep in touch with the afghan soldiers every week at least. i want to let you don't assure you that these afghans have sacrificed so much and helped us out. with the current situation going on, they are making them look bad over there right now. but these guys stood up and they have helped me every single day to become what i am. it is not fair for us as americans, because i didn't go over there and fight for republicans or democrats. i didn't fight for any type of religion, christian, muslim, any of them. i fought for americans. we all need to understand that and realize that and pull
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together and ensure that we all live on the greatest place on earth. i had an opportunity to speak and share this with people just like you who would listen to me. i have used this platform to go out and make a difference. maybe you look at me now and say, well, what can you say this? what do you know? you are 24 years old. well, yesterday i gave out my first scholarship and it has been the greatest thing that i have done. i called up margaret davis last year. i wanted to go out and make a difference. i called her up and said, what can i do to make a difference? i want to educate kids and help them. i want to still be what i can for the marines. how much money do you think you
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can raise? well, whatever sounds good. a million dollars. she said, okay, we will give you about a year to raise that. just knowing that i would do whatever it took, raising $1.2 million within four months, and i gave out my first scholarship yesterday. i'm not with that, i teamed up to go get veterans jobs. i'm trying to help guys get jobs i'm standing up and trying to make a difference. when you read the book, i hope that you read everything that i talk about and how i figured out. i would like to say that i am doing it for the men and women who sacrificed so much for our
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life. every day that you don't want to do the best that you can, you're doing nothing less than disgracing all of the men and women who have paid so much work. i want to let you know something, i am not okay with that. thank you, i really appreciate it. [applause] thank you. [applause] i would like to open up for questions at the end. if you have any. >> if you don't start asking me questions, i will start asking you.
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>> how i see the rest of my life? well, that is a great question. i tell everyone i have a construction company. i am consulting for a few companies and i just finished a book. i'm on the road, but how do i see the rest of my life? is a challenge that i have. i am 24 years old. everybody agrees that we live our life to try to top everything we do. at 24 years old, i have received a medal of honor. what am i going to do for the rest my life? well, i'm going to find something, i can promise you that. it's going to be make a difference and say things and be true to myself and be true to inspire the whole nation. accepting nothing less than being the best and holding each other accountable every day.
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the rest my life is gone and make a difference. whatever that might be. [applause] >> [inaudible question] >> i have no idea. i did ask that question all the time. i don't know, i wasn't there. i've been asked what are the things we can do to help servicemen and women and their family. well, i would like to tell you that this is a topic that a lot of people get mad at me about. but i will speak on it because i am so passionate about it. a lot of guys come back and they deal with the stress of what is going on. and they deal with the events
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that occurred over there. you can will them accountable in their actions. i get so frustrated when i see a guy, especially a member who has served and done so much for our country. i get frustrated when they don't want to take every opportunity everyday and do you something to hold them back. they let something like ptsd hold them back. these guys have seen what it takes to be able to live in this great country and be free. they have seen it. for them to sit there and disregard what they have seen happen and to let them not allowed to make a difference and not going be the best that they can every single day, it bothers me a lot. what can we do to help everyone out? don't forget why you are sitting here and why you live in a free
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country. that is probably what will help out the most. we take our freedom, we take advantage of it and we forget why we are here. there are some family members who are wondering what is going on. it is not just about the men and women serving, but their families. because they serve as well. we never can forget them, and i think that is what is going to be the biggest difference. >> [inaudible question]
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just because of this, the bonds with me of my brothers were strong because they held me accountable. i thought, oh, man come i will have to answer that. but, you know what? it's the right thing to do. just because there are orders doesn't mean that it's always the right thing to do. that is more of what i like to do. look myself in the mirror, i am able to have a solid conscious about that. >> yes?
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>> [inaudible question] >> [inaudible question] >> okay. >> [inaudible question] >> it is a combination of all of them. my father would never let me quit. it is a combination of growing up with him. he does what is right, he does what he feels is the best for him. with the marine core training, my father told me they pounded
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in you even more. how did i not die that day? i do not know. i cannot begin to tell you. i don't know. everyday that we have is a bonus day that we live in. if you go to sleep and wake up at a bonus day. we are not entitled to anything. that is the thing that we must remember. why worry about the unknown? we all worry so much about tomorrow. there are so many combinations. thank you. >> [inaudible question]
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>> you make your own decisions. if someone pushed you into it, you give every person facts and let them make their own decisions. you can never make up someone's mind for them. i recommend going to the military. of course, i am going to say the marines because i am biased. thank you. [applause] >> yes, ma'am? >> [inaudible question] >> no, i don't. the only time i wear my medal of honor is in my uniform because i am required to do so.
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i want to let you know that men and women serving, they should be wearing medals of honor as well. it is just as much theirs as it is mine. if you've ever been in situation to receive a the medal of honor, raise your hand? none of them. that is why they don't have a medal of honor around her neck. >> [inaudible question]
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>> yes, i spoke at the naval academy. but i don't go out and speak a lot. a lot of people don't want to hear what i had to say. we get into rules of engagement, and like i said last night, i truly believe that if anyone gives you an excuse to stop you from doing something, this or that, that is complete bs. it is incompetent leadership. >> i did not get to experience it. i was just doing it and marching
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around. i went back to the base about a month ago. and i didn't even always here. it seemed like coming from this place, this place was so much longer. and i thought, oh, wow. thank you so much for having me here. i really appreciate the questions. take care. [applause] >> tell us what you think about our programming this weekend. you can tweet us.booktv, comment on our facebook wall, or send us an e-mail. booktv is nonfiction books every weekend on c-span2. >> on your screen right now is the trinity united methodist church in savanna, georgia, where booktv is live from the savannah book festival. we will be back in just a little while with jake tapper.
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>> here's a look at the festivals happening around the country. during the second week in march, booktv will be live from arizona. among several authors featured are kristen iversen and timothy egan. be sure to check out our schedule online. the virginia festival of the book begins wednesday, march 20, and runs through the 24th. this annual event in charlottesville, includes many great authors including carson john lewis. also that we can come it is the 26th annual tennessee williams book festival. it will feature the third annual poetry contest, highlighted plays and many other features. the venice book festival takes place in april. it will feature all the presentations of the historic bennett peter.
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please let us know about the book festivals in your area, and we will be happy to post them to our wall at, please e-mail us at >> here is where the story starts to get interesting. here is where the groups need each other. david petraeus spent time at fort leavenworth, kansas. he was a fair haired boy, they were sending out to pasture, literally, but he realizes something. he realizes this is the intellectual center and they form the curriculum of the
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general staff college, and they organized the national training centers. lessons of one and lessons of the other, which affects the patterns of the next. he says to himself as he's learning myths, he says, holy cow -- and he says things like that, things like jeepers on super. he said they put an insurgent in charge of the engine of change. he viewed himself as an insurgent. meanwhile there is a professor at the school of advanced international studies. also a leading neoconservative he was. he is a member of the defense policy advisory board, and so he
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goes over to take a look at what is going on. he's the only member of his board that goes there. there is an insurgency mounting and no one knows what to do about it. he comes back feeling really upset. feeling pangs of guilt. he was advising this administration. he had advocated for this war. his son had recently graduated the army and was going to be sent. he thinks that he has to do something about this. so he sets up a seminar in vermont. and he goes through his rolodex and he invites everybody that he can find who has written anything remotely interesting about the subject of counterinsurgency. it comes up to about dirty
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people. the pivotal thing about this is not so much what they discussed, is that most of these people didn't know each other before. they didn't know of one another's existence. they thought they were out in the limb -- a lot of these people were way out on a limb, some of them were junior officers, think tank types, and they realized that they formed a community and they might be able to do something if they work together. so they come away with a great sense of mission. meanwhile, david petraeus knows a lot of these people who are at this conference. some are his students or colleagues or people who have been under his command. one thing he is going to do he
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decides is right a new counterinsurgency field manual for the army. there hadn't been one for 20 years. so he draws on his group from the harbor conference to be the one who helped him write this conference outside of the usual channels within the army. so many things happen at the end of 2006. one is midterm elections, the democrats when. there is a counterinsurgency
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strategy and there is an old phrase about this. clear an area of insurgents and you hold it. you don't turn it to the iraqis right away. and then you help build an infrastructure. it builds trust within the community, and a security structure. these four things do not happen by clinton's. it was all part of this plot. by the way, when i use the word plot, i am generally not a conspiracy guy. but these people call themselves the cabal or the west point motto. a lot of them came out of the social sciences of west point among their own graduates. for example, all of this happens not by coincidence.
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general petraeus, when he was in leavenworth, he had a vast network of old colleagues throughout the pentagon bureaucracy. he deliberately cultivates this woman named meghan o'sullivan, who is the chief chief adviser on the security council. he cultivates her and they are talking on the phone practically every day. this is kind of outrageous. he's a three-star general in fort leavenworth. talking on the phone every day with a senior adviser to the president of the united states. general casey, who is a four-star general, actually commanding troops in iraq, he says we only need one more brigade. what do you think we might end
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much to the argument, she talked about why this really isn't enough. by the way, does is not a paula broadwell situation. this instantly professional. but can you imagine, this is someone who is subverting the chain of command. he has always kind of been an off the reservation guy. he is doing what needs to be done. at the same time, there is a civilian analyst who used to teach history at west point named fred kagan who wrote a study indicating a surgeon the american enterprise institute. they want to get this into the white house, directly to
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president bush, to the new secretary of defense. to some of the subordinates who were talking about the restrictions. everything is all lined up, mind up so that he can go in and impose a strategy that he wants to impose. it has all been very exquisitely coordinated. >> you can watch this and other programs online at here are some of the latest headlines in the publishing industry this week. mcmillan will pay up to $20 million to settle price-fixing in a consolidated lawsuit. this includes those accused of working with apple to price
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e-books to compete with amazon. the u.s. justice department indicated that it eliminated competition in the e-book market. we have hardly gone through with settlements to pay $31 million, harpercollins, $19 million, and simon & schuster, about $70 million. the justice department has concluded its review and approve a merger of random house and penguin without condition. the united states is the first country to approve the merger with a review still in progress. the publishers say they expect the merger to be closed later this year. according to the u.s. census bureau, book sales decreased 5.5%. that is the smallest decline in years. it reports that book sales are 50 and $21 billion last year, which is slightly less than the 15.28 billion in 2011. stay up to date on breaking news about authors and books and
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publishing by like us on facebook at, or follow us on twitter. you can also visit and click on news about our books. >> at the end of the working day, about 2:00 a.m., the prime minister would say, soup out loud, very loudly. that was the signal that the work day was over. he would always read before he went to bed. churchill loved all games. and he raised geese on his farm. he said this goose was a friend of mine, you go ahead and cart. in all of my research, i never
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found a mention of a vegetable. he made fun of vegetarians, which he called nut eaters. all the nut eaters and food emphatic that i had ever known died early after a long period of senile decay. another favorite food was irish stew with plenty of onions and sometimes pineapple. he served caviar, especially when kerry hawkins bought it back as a gift from the soviet
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union. churchill loved picnics. whatever the place or the weather, even in wartime, there's a wonderful picture of him sitting on a rock by the side of the road. he picnicked with roosevelt and on the banks of the rhine with his generals in the north african desert with friends. he established his own rituals enthusiastically seen and called for verses that could only be recited at picnics. much has been said and written about churchill and alcohol. some are exaggerated. i go into detail in the book about the grieving habits he had. churchill had been told he was a
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joke, and he charged one or two of his critics repeatedly. he did consume more alcohol than other cc today, but not a great deal by the standards of his contemporaries. and it did not affect him or his work. >> you can watch this and other programs online at >> you are watching live coverage from the savannah book festival in savannah, georgia. this is booktv on c-span2. up next, jake tapper unveils the story of combat outpost keating in 2009, which served as one of the deadliest battles of operation enduring freedom. here is jake tapper. >> hello, and welcome. welcome to the sixth annual savanna book festival.
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my name is laura. there are 36 authors speaking today. all of the authors will be available to sign their books at the tent in the middle of the square following this presentation. part of the proceeds of the books will support the festival, so we hope you will visit the book sale and meet the author and get your book signed. all of these events today are free of charge and open to the public. this is thanks to the support of the city of savanna, department of cultural affairs, and individual donors. if you enjoyed today's presentation, you will have an opportunity to make a donation as you exit the venue. now, can i take a few moments
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for you to check your cell phone to make sure that they are silent or turned off. you may notice that there are cameras set up. this is c-span's booktv. they are broadcasting the savannah book festival live to the nation today. this is the second year of our partnership. we cherish their support. be on your best behavior and please give c-span a round of applause. [applause] [applause] >> this beautiful venue at trinity united methodist church is sponsored by mr. and mrs. jack romano. chief washington correspondent jake tapper is sponsored by them. he became a correspondent for abc news in 2003. he was the network's chief white house correspondent 2009 until
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2012 and just last month, left to join cnn as the chief washington correspondent and anchor of an upcoming daily news show. his book, "the outpost: an untold story of american valor", is about a 2009 battle in afghanistan. one magazine described it as perhaps the best afghanistan but to date. please welcome to the savannah book festival, jake tapper. [applause] >> thank you so much. i know sergeant burchfield who is in the book and his family are here. anybody who is in the book over there, there she is, hello.
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he and his son and i believe everything is set. also, but he is a national guardsman. he was training afghan soldiers and gave his life trying to save an afghan soldier six years ago tomorrow. in any case, anybody who is here whose lives are chronicled in the book or lives of loved ones are chronicled in the book, it means so much when they do turn out much when they do turn out and come to visit us. please come over and introduce yourself after the event. i am not a likely person to have written the war book.
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i have covered the iraq war at a little bit for a week. bob woodward of was injured in an ied event in that country. generally speaking, i have been one who covered this. i would like to say thank you to my host. they have been really lovely to me. >> we are on a frantic search for my iphone, and he drove me back here he drove me back here and help me search. thank you so much. he and his wife have been wonderful hosts. in any case, i am not a likely book author for a war book. i did not serve. i have not been indicted for any
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period longer than a couple of weeks. but there was a moment in my life when you have moments that changed the course of your life, you do not realize at the time that you can look at them in retrospect. that must've been one my life changed. it sounds melodramatic, but it really did change in a book about afghanistan. that relates and has significance to me. that moment was in october 2009. i was in the hospital in northwest washington dc with my wife. also our newborn son, jack. and her 2-year-old daughter, alice. i was holding jack. he was a day or two old. out of the corner of my eye, i caught a news story on tv. that is not so strange. i can tell you that it happened
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to be my daughter's birth. the day of my daughter's birth. i'm kind of look and see what else is going on in the news even when things are significant in my life. this was much more important and significant than the toetapping event. although it did not receive nearly as much attention in media. that wasn't outpost. in eastern afghanistan, one that i had never heard of, that warning had been overrun. what there was of this, is outpost within will later be
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called an indefensible position. it was at the bottom of the mountain, just in pakistan. i was holding my son who is hours old. they were soldiers that were taken from the world as i was receiving my son. there was something in that moment it just struck me. and i wanted to know more. i want to know something about the 40 something man and what it's like to have such an intense firefight where you are overwhelmingly attacked. fifty-three u.s. troops facing up to 400 taliban, all of them had a high ground surrounding the camp. what is it like to face that?
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what is it like to be those insurgents back. and also, the big overriding mystery. why would anyone put an outpost there? i became a journalist for a lot of reasons. there were things i wanted to read and questions that i had that were not being answered and not being written. over the next few months i waited for more information at about the outpost and i didn't really get it. so i started making phone calls. i started asking people who were there what had happened. i started reading everything i could about combat outpost getting. u.s. abandoned it in bombay. ultimately, i became convinced that the story of the battle,
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the story would be a really important story to tell. i got a contract and started writing this book. started talking to the troops that had served there. sergeant burchfield and his fellow soldiers. one of whom you may have heard was awarded the medal of honor earlier this week. one of the many heroes of that battle. those who are heroic and remarkable. if for no other reason that he is haunted by the men he could not say that they come even though there is nothing more he could done, and he has definitely saved lives. i started writing the book and i heard from a young intelligence
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officer named ross berghoff, who had helped set up combat outpost keating in 2006. and he demanded that we get together for lunch. because it was set up during 2006, the u.s. had not really expanded into eastern afghanistan. eastern afghanistan is one of the most dangerous parts of afghanistan. up to seven medals of honor honor that had been awarded to troops serving these provinces, these two provinces. it's an unbelievably dangerous place. of those seven, i should point out that three of them were
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awarded posthumously. so he convinced me that i need to tell more stories than just those of 2009. there were others that needed to be told. he told me about the lieutenant colonel and the oklahoma national guardsman who i told you about not long ago. i should say a recipient. so then he convinced me. and i started hearing from this other guy, the lieutenant who was with the squadron that took over which was from [inaudible] they took over in 2007. he wanted to know about the guys that who didn't make it back
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from his crew. his commander and chris pfeiffer, and he also wanted me to know about the successes that the u.s. troops had in that region in their deployment year. it wasn't all for nothing. he wanted me to know. there were things that were achieved. pretty soon i had a much larger task on my hand, which was to tell the story of this outpost. in doing so, i realized that they had forced me write a better book. to tell a story not as wacky talk about others who paid the ultimate price, but a story about why it is so tough to
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achieve what our troops have been trying to achieve in afghanistan. why this task is so difficult. the afghans are with who the u.s. is trying to partner and how difficult it is for them to do what the united states is asking them to do. and that is how i came to write "the outpost." there was a review in a liberal publication about my book, in which the author criticized the subtitle of the book. an untold story of american ballet. he thought it was, i think, he thought that i was kind of using the subtitle to mask what was in
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the pages inside, which can be read if one is inclined to oppose war that way. i did not write it as a polemic, but a story and a narrative, this is what happened and these are the people who are making it happen and to whom it happened. he thought that somehow it was false advertising. i disagree, and respectfully. i don't think that valor has to do with whether or not you support the mission or whether or not you think the united states should be involved in this war. whether you think the way it has
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been waged has been wise, or that you think that the president and the secretary of defense and the joint chiefs of staff has given you everything you need to conduct a war. i think it is something else. i think of it as encouraged that is rooted -- a selfless and thus that most of us cannot imagine. a selflessness to help about it. whether that brother is american or afghan. a willingness to put your own life at risk. to help that person survived. i guess i can understand why this reviewer thought it was a cheesy way to try to get red state people buy my book. but that is not, my projection of his perspective.
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but writing this book caused me to re-examine so many things about how i view patriotism. how i view of valor. how i view courage. how i view this country that pays the price for the rest of us, even if we don't pay much attention to them. when i say that, i mean the media and also the public. this book made me, i hope, a better journalist. i know it made me a better person. the reason that it did is because of men like sergeant burchfield and women here in the home front and also serving
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abroad, women stationed in 2006 and 2007. this is one of the reasons that people question why women should be serving in combat. it might be better because it made me realize that in washington dc, and i can only speak for myself, in washington dc, my coverage of wars has been good. my coverage of conflict has been different. i can only speak for myself and that the focus of trivial political moves is part of our political coverage and will always be that way.
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we don't cover them enough. you could probably go an entire day watching any network or cable news organization, and it wouldn't be mentioned that we have 60,000 troops in afghanistan right now. so we don't mention it enough, we don't talk about it enough. that reflects and perpetuates the problem. we don't think about it enough. i certainly did not. i did not think what it meant to troops on the ground -- what it was like for them for troops on the ground, while i was covering for abc news, the pentagon, 10,000 troops, 40,000 troops,
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baseball scores and numbers talked about that way. it is superficial and another thought about one u.s. soldier when i was covering 30,000. there is one u.s. soldier and his wife and kids right there. when you talk about a 35,000 and 40,000, you don't understand and i think the moment of holding my son and hearing about this and holding jack raymond capper and thinking about, oh, my goodness, i cannot imagine what those mothers are feeling right now and a lot of those moms, a lot of them from 2006 through 2009,
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a lot of them, every day for them is like that moment that i had when i was imagining moving that precious baby. so i can't come up with a solution, thankfully it is not my job. as to what we can do to connect people more closely to the sacrifices being made so that people are not glibly calling for troops to run into battle every time there is a conflict that becomes a talking point on the news. every time a general things a solution to a conflict is let's send it more soldiers than that. i cannot tell you what needs to change. the fact that we are so disconnected from these people who do this for us.
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not a lot of money, time away from people who love them. impossible conditions. even though the war in afghanistan, the combat mission will be over at the end of 2014, even though we know there will be troops for a long time after that, special forces troops, this war will never be over for hundreds of thousands of americans. those who have lost family members or who have scars that we cannot see from the outside, but if you know these people, you know that they are not the same people that they were a year or two ago. it's a great story if you haven't read it today. it's on the front page of "the wall street journal" about a marine who was the last one of 12 men who was in his unit in
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iraq, and i never heard this before, it has been called moral injury. it's not quite as somatic stress, but hot dam. he made it back alive, but other 11 did not. we have hundreds of thousands of these people, brothers and sisters and fathers and mothers. those who we were not connected to it. the general told me, and he quoted in the book not by name, but he said he was worried about how easy it has become for the u.s. go to war. the because of the weight of the armed services or soda. it is almost the romans hiring legionnaires to fight. in savannah, i know you talk about the haitian mercenaries.
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but we can't go on pretending 1% of the population isn't doing anything for us. we just cannot. i'm not saying that need to raise taxes or have a national service requirement, that's not for me to say. but it is not sustainable for us to keep doing this and keep sending these people to fight these wars. the average american knows the name of more celebrities than medal of honor recipients. so i think what this book did for me -- it was a way for me to confront this in myself and a way to try to do one small part to try to correct this so that people would know the names of
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those who had served there, including those who made it back. they are just as important. they are in many ways the walking wounded. in that way it has been incredibly rewarding people have read "the outpost" and for the most part like the and enjoyed it -- maybe that's not the right word, but found it meaningful. what i always say, this is not the poetry of some of the great war books of our time. it is a reporter's book and i try to write it in a way that people would find readable. but i know it is not as poetic as many of the authors speaking
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this weekend. because they happen. but the stories are moving the stories are moving because they are real. not because i wrote them. i found this experience very rewarding. i found it very moving. if you haven't read the book, i hope you will give it a look not for my benefit, but just because maybe you will learn a name of somebody and that will mean something to you in terms of connecting to the war and the way that it happened to me. with that, i am happy to take any questions that you might have. [applause] >> thank you. [applause] >> if anyone has a question? >> yes, please raise your hand.
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>> im annette schwarz, i'm from new york city. i am wondering if you were book impacts the people that are in charge and you had to leave because you are leaning a certain way against the war. >> i don't understand the question. >> well, you could have points of view in writing this book. obviously it was against war completely. i'm wondering if that had anything to do with your leaving abc and going to cnn? >> i would respectfully disagree
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with assertions embedded in that question. [laughter] the first is that the book is antiwar. it is not. it is pro-truth about war. i'm not saying that we should have been in afghanistan or that we shouldn't have been in eastern afghanistan. i'm simply saying that if we are going to send troops there, we need to make sure that they have everything that they need so they can fight this war. that is what i am saying. [applause] i did write it in such a way because i don't offer many transfers and the book. it might be that war is awful. but that is not what i think. i voted in a certain way. ..
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>> that means we don't put remote outposts at the bottom of three steep mountains, that's a general conclusion for generals and colonels to arrange. it's not an anti-war book, and the fact the book was embraced by as many soldiers as it has shows it can be read in a different way. in terms of my leaving abc news, which was a wonderful place to
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live, and i also live and work for ten years, it was entirely because i wanted to anchor my own show, and cnn gave me the opportunity. that's really it. i -- it was a tough decision. i really loved being there. i loved working with george and robin roberts and diane sawyer, and the president of abc news. they are wonderful people. hi a great time there. i was personally ready for a new challenge. i had been a correspondent for ten years and anchoring seemed like a pretty cool thing, and i'll have my own show on cnn, and we'll see if i'm any good at it. thanks. [applause] >> how are you, sir. lieutenant tom, going to afghanistan next week. just a quick question. i know it motivated you to get into the correspondence, writing "the outpost," but i guess i
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really appreciate what you do for us. i wonder your opinion how to get more correspondence with us to tell our stories. >> first of all, thank you for your service -- [applause] is that your wife next to you? thank you to you too. i know when i was embedded for a week in afghanistan, was probably the worst week of my wife's life, and i didn't have a gun with me, and i was not running after anything dangerous. this is a larger -- the question about what -- how could we get more reporters telling the stories? first of all, there's a lot of great reporters trying to do that who are in afghanistan who
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have written other books, and there's a wonderful book about iraq. i think there's two things. one is the appetite of the public needs to exist in order for publishers to tell the stories, to spend the money to tell the stories. thankfully, the public has been pretty receptive to my book and other books about the car, so that's good, now, getting stories told on television or film is a different matter. i have to say i was happy when cnn gave me an hour to tell clipt's story, just a wonderful opportunity. the other problem in addition to trying to make sure the public is interested because they are not all depressing stories. they can be inspiring, moving
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stories that's not eating spinach, and i know this is the longest war we faced, but it's not adding to the weariness of the war, but inspiring people. one of the problems is the pentagon. the pentagon does not cooperate enough when it comes to tells stories, allowing us to tell the stories, so often reporter only swoop in when there's a horrific event opposed to other types of stories. i think that the pentagon could cooperate more with reporters, and, obviously, i was thinking about this earlier, you know, when i think back about the stories of jessica lynch and pat tilman, the place to start is not lie about stories that happen. people die in friendly fire accident, and that's horrible,
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but when lies are told, it not only disgraces the honor of the soldiers that died, but it turns the public off from trusting the pentagon, and it's a disservice to yo and your fellow troops. beyond not lying, i think, there needs to be more openness. this is not a personal complaint. the pentagon was fairly cooperative is a big word, but i'd say uncooperative? [laughter] you know, i think there's more opportunities to tell the stories and talk to people. public information officers are very controlling, and i understand why, but that gets in the way of reporters doing their jobs. does that make sense?
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please be safe. hope to see you next year. i won't even write a book, just come back. [laughter] >> i'm from charleston, south carolina, i'm here with my 6-year-old grandson his father was killed in action. i just wanted to thank you, jake, for writing the book. it's been part of the human process. it's helped those of us who suffered that loss immeasurably, and i don't see it as an anti-war book, and thank you for writing it. >> thank you. [applause] >> i was asking you about that in the beginning. i didn't know if you were here. there was a lot of traffic. hi, cooper, how are you? cooper's dad, buddy, a very,
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very brave man with the oklahoma national guard who was taken six years ago tomorrow, i believe, and, the 19th, what day is today? 16th, 17th, 18th, 19th, tuesday, okay. so thank you for being here. >> one more? >> yeah, i'm fine. >> given your experience in research, what do you think of the reaction against chuck hagel's being secretary of defense, a man whose clearly reluctant to send soldiers into harm's way having been there himself. >> the question was about the former senator chuck hagel, a man with two purple hearts,
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shrapnel in his test, and all the controversy over him. without weighing in on him per se. i like the idea of people who served in uniform having a say in policy decisions in which men in uniform and women in uniform are sent into harm's way, as a general thought. i don't have a position on whether he should be secretary of defense. i do think it's interesting, and the last three or four weeks i've wished my show was up and running so we could talk about this at some length, but i think it's interesting, john kerry, chuck hagel, two men with, i think, five purple hearts between them, and both of them, although, they votedded for iraq
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and afghanistan, can't say they are completely doves, although, maybe john kerry didn't vote for iraq. i can't keep it straight, but in any case, what it does, and we just talked about this over lunch, what it does to a man or woman to have killed someone and to have had friends killed and whether or not that's an asset or possibly a liability when you're serving as secretary of defense or secretary of state. it's a really interesting question, one we have not talked about as a nation before. i did a "nightline" in 2004 about john kerry and the idea of what killing a man, especially this one event where he killed, what that did to him. i interviewed a number of his shape mates, veterans, swift boat, and we talked about what it did to him, and it's
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something he doesn't like to talk about, it's something that haunts him, i think, to a degree, and we don't -- there's not a lot of discussion about it, and, in fact, people, if you talk to troops, a lot of civilians will say stay stupid things, like, wow, have you killed anybody? it's not fun. it's not games. you know, it's something that can really mess you up. it can, i mean, obviously, can it also not mess you up, but still be troubling. for others, it's kill or be killed, i did what i had to do, but it's an interesting topic for debate more largely. there's a guy, lieutenant colonel andrew grossman, who he talked a lot about the field he calls killology, which is what does killing do to a person? it's interesting. i wish -- i hope we can talk about it more because we're, you know, we're going to have a lot more people who have killed walking our streets as these next war draws down.
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>> this will be the last one. >> i kind of evaded your question there. [laughter] >> i'm larry from savannah, georgia. two-thirds of the way through the book, but what struck me is that in the outpost you have mostly 19 and 20 #-year-olds, those in their 20s, and might be what the captain, early 30s, and that might be, what, two people in the 30s, yet he's negotiating treaties and agreements on a very large area. the question is that i'm struck by the responsibility that the united states puts on its junior officers and troops. it looks like, to me, it's somewhat unprecedented, and, frankly, that's one of the reasons we're so good. is that an accurate observation?
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>> absolutely. the troops are, especially the book is -- takes place during a big push for what -- in the military strategy called counterinsurgency, basically to simplify it, nation building and by hoping to build up a nation or a village by village, you hopefully connect them to the afghan government and convincing them to not be cooperative with insurgents to that's counter insurgencies and, yes, troops from lowly privates to the captain on the outpost are called upon to be ambassadors, civil engineers, diplomats, and, also, of course, to be soldiers, and it is complex, but mostly troops rise to the challenge, absolutely. it shows how difficult the work
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is, especially when you try to figure out in one village who is the bad guy, who is the good guy. there could be a good guy whose son is 5 bad guy. that happened all the time. you're absolutely op target. hope you like the last third. [laughter] >> we have ten minutes, kirk, do you have one? >> you talk about the disconnect, and it's hard to see the victories in this type of war, like, when world war ii, you know, hitler was taking italy, taking france, and then we took it back, and when it was over, we defeated the enemy, and it seems like when we left iraq, you didn't feel a victory, and when you leave, the troops pull out of afghanistan, you don't feel a victory, and my middle
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son's in the army, and i want to feel a victory, and i know you don't know the answer, but in your opinion, when we left afghanistan and pakistan, five years, ten years from now, will it have made a difference? i mean, what are we changing? where's the victory? that's what i want know. >> where's the victory. wow, nothing riding on my answer here. [laughter] just an army mom's peace of mind, that's all. no big deal. [laughter] i would not -- i would not say that it's for nothing. i think that -- i'm going to avoid the war in iraq for obvious reasons, but in terms of war in afghanistan, there are accomplishments made. there are achievements. the afghan national army's built up. the national police force is built up, the border patrol, will it sustain? will it last? i don't know. i hope so. i don't know. i can't say. when i was there in 2011, the
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troops with whom i was embedded said that they were confident about the soldiers and the policemen themselves. they were more concerned about the less sexy story about logistics. would they be supported? would they have medivac helicopters and food supplied for them? it's still relatively new and trying to figure that all out. 234 terms of the larger question where are the ticker tapes parade? i don't know. i'll show up. i mean, you know, i -- i'll tell you, the -- i think that it would be smart for any politician to start throwing them when people and the troops start coming home whether or not you support the war, you know, you can support the fact that people are willing to sacrifice for something greater than themselves, and the lieutenant, the lieutenant governor of
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delaware read the book, and i think that this is, you know, that that politicians want to do something, but he reached out to me and asked to invite the troops to my inaugust rail. he was being -- he was reelected lieutenant governor of delaware. okay, it is just the lieutenant of delaware, but he wanted to do something. he had troops come and they spoke, and i talked to junior rotc, and they wore tuxedos at the ball, and they were celebrated and welcomed. that doesn't need to happen for all 2 million people who served in iraq and afghanistan, but i do think some sort of welcome home would be appropriate. again, whether or not you support the military actions. >> i guess we have five more
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minutes. this guy realliments to ask a question. it better be good. [laughter] >> i guess my question is what resources are fighting men and women not getting in afghanistan, and, secondly, as we go into phasing out of afghanistan and serve as we have problem areas in the world. how much is the doctrine on the minds of the leadership at the pentagon and in the white house. >> the last part again? >> the powell doctrine? >> the overwhelming force used -- >> seems like we're going to be shrinking with budget cuts and other things. >> the resources the troops did not get range all over the map, but i'll focus on one resource that was a huge problem throughout the life span of the outpost, and that is there were not enough helicopters in afghanistan to do the job so in 2006 when they set up the
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outposts, one the reasons it was set up at the bottom of three steep mountains was because it needed to be near the road, and it's not the only reason, but one of the reasons, and it needed to be near the road because they didn't have enough helicopters for resupply. they needed to resupply by convoy. that's because most of the helicopters were in iraq. in 2007, in fact, there were 20 # times more troops in iraq than were in afghanistan, and with the, you know, commensurate levels of air support, hell cometters -- helicopters, itself, so, you know, in combat outpost keating, that changed because the convoys got attacked and people got injured and killed and by 2007, they were no longer doing resupplies by road, only by helicopter. from 2007-2009, the pilots flew their less and less under
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certain conditions. no moon. that would be the optimal condition. that's just one example. they wanted to close down the base. the colonel and lieutenant colonel wanted to show down the outpost, and one of the reasons why of several general mcchrystal said no was because he had helicopters that were involved in a military operation north of the outpost so we couldn't use those to help shut down the base. that's -- i think that's the biggest example. there's other types of resources, but that's the biggest example. in terms of the powell dock trip, you know, he's -- doctrine, you know, he's not in the military or the government anymore, and what we are getting it something closer to a very different kind of doctrine. i think, personally, president obama -- not personally, i mean, i say this as somebody's who's reported on this, president obama probably would not have --
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president obama of 2013 would not have ordered the surge of troops in afghanistan that he did in 2009. i think he feels differently about the use of force. i think he feels its limitations more and is less willing to just listen to a general saying we need a surge, we need a surge. it worked in iraq, we need it here too. i think he's less willing to do that so going forward, i don't know who follows him as president, but i would expect -- i would not expect more military, more use of force by president obama, rather, i would expect more strategic and in the way he used sanctions in syria, iran, and i would be very surprised if he were willing to do another libya-type operation. so that's all the time we have? you've been a wonderful audience, and very good looking if i may say so. [applause]
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thank you. [applause] [inaudible conversations] >> and live coverage from the 6th annual savannah book festival in georgia continues in a few minutes on booktv on c-span2. [inaudible conversations]
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i wanted to do more, but within the confines of the book, you can only do so much. we wanted diversity, democrats, republicans, different ages. we knew on the basis of nine you can't make generalizations that are 100% certain, and we say as much in the book that our conclusions are hypothesis that other people might now run with, but in order to make even those kinds of hi -- highhypothesis, we needed a dive group. >> there's the research project around for the last couple election cycle, and they had eight in 2008 so several of the women that the white house project identified several years before the 2008 election olympia
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snowe, and, you know, we also wanted to consider this notion, barbara lee, here several years ago when you did the last round six years ago, had talked about looking at women governors. we wanted to look at the women governors who had been through some of barbara lee's training or the pipeline to the presidency. >> we also made the observation that when a male is elected to senatorship, immediately, he's cast as a future presidential hopeful. for example, scott brown had not even been swarn in yet in massachusetts, and the url, was already purchased. so many women had been in washington for so many years as legislators and working op important work and, yet, their names never bubbled to the top, and we were curious why not? >> how did you decide that you
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wanted to write this book? i mean, all three of you studied similar topics, but how did the book actually come about? >> your idea, ted. >> ted? >> well, i guess it was my idea. i've been a political nerd since i was, you know, i don't know, my parents still remember my sister and i in 1960 stages a nixon-kennedy debate with our stuffed animals. [laughter] my elephant beat her rabbit. during all of those years of nerddom, what always fascinated me were magazine issues that would come out way in advance of the presidential election that would preview the eight or ten or 12 people who ought to be considered, and it struck me after seeing so many of the issues and so many magazines that women were not making it on
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to that list. they were not being thought to be presidential. they were thought not to be of presidential timber, and as an academic, you tend to ask, well, why, and that, for me, was the origin of the book. >> watch this and other programs online at
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>> then in 2002, iran, which had been working with us secretly to quiet the afghan situation woke up one morning to see they were a part of the axis of evil. while they were puzzled, reasonably, having fought a war with iraq for ten years and had nothing really to do with north korea, why were they part of the axis of evil. the chance we had really to do something to improve the u.s. iranian relationship was really undermind with that speech, and we've been chewing and froing over this, actually, for the
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past ten years, and 2003, you get the iraq war. one of the two unwinnable american wars the united states felt it had to engage in over the past decade. obama, unfortunately, comes in with very little background in foreign policy, never paid much attention to it, served in washington for only two years because i was a very enthusiastic supporter and remain, but i think those of us who looked at him knew national security could be a problem, and when he appointed the secretary of state for domestic reasons, and and pointed the secretary of defense for domestic reasons, and appointed a retired marine general to be the national adviser who lasted a year, and put leon panetta, and i know he's one of your neighbors in california, but he was captured by the operational mentality in the cia after being in the
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building no more than a month. this was an extremely weak national security team. obama also, i think, was rolled by the military, that's how you got to serge of forces. i think he realized he was had by the military, and i think that's important. one of the reasons i'm a little more optimistic about this second term is i think this is a wiser man in terms of foreign policy, and if you look at the fact that he has ended in the war in iraq, he has meandering towards ending the war in afghanistan, he's allowing the pentagon, and you've got to remember when you look at the pentagon, you're looking at an institution that has the fine motor skills of a dinosaur. it takes the pentagon a long time to put together a timetable such as for withdraw. all obama has to do, and i know it's not this simple, but i would look at the experience,
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came in in 1995, gave the speech in 1996, announcing the bleeding wound, he had nazis tell schulz we were getting out and the military had a year to turn it around, and they wouldn't be able to. 88, they announced the timetable, 89 they were gone. we need to do something similar. military's had its chances. we had 11 commanders in afghanistan in 11 years. look at thomas rick's book "the generals" that devotes a lot of attention to this. that's not a war where we can be successful. it's not the kind of military we have. there's no military that's ever been successful in a counter insurgency, and not only do they have a sanctuary, but an ally in pakistan who we provide with billions of dollars of military and economic aide that makes the
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picture somewhat confusing to, you know, how do you disengage from the situation where you're supporting vertically integrated criminal enterprise that's called the karzai government? i think we are finding our way to some resolution of the crisis, but, again, i don't know how many years. this is going to take. my optimism, just to jump into that for a minute is the team, kerry and hagel, i think, are two good appointments. in fact, i wonder why obama wasted so much time with susan rice who i don't think was qualified to be the secretary of state when you had john kerry, his whole career devoted to becoming an secretary of state. chuck hagel is a wonderful
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nomination, and the criticism of him, frankly, is silly. i mean, it's anti-semitism. people are really throwing that around so loosely. it's embarrassing to see accusations like that because once he said jewish lobby instead of israeli lobby. if you go back to irk miller's book, he said "israeli lobby" on many occasions, but the israeli lobby is a jewish lobby. i don't quite know what the debate is all about. i think it's going to just sort of slither away because it doesn't make a lot of sense. hagel is a sound man, has all the qualifications that you would need. i was very disappointed when obama made petraeus the cia direct e but petraeus took care of that himself and took himself out of the game by giving adultery a very bad name. in the process, but what was
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obama thinking when he took an active duty, four star general who had strong policy positions on some of the key issues that intelligence officers were going to have to grapple with? i can't think of a better scenario for to -- to politization. they didn't want to put it in the hands of policymakers, and, certainly, not in the hands of military policymakers. what the cia was created for was to challenge military intelligence, worst case intelligence, and when the cia did its job correctly, that is what they have done. >> watch this and other programs online at
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>> it was almost two years ago that i decided it was time to write a fact-based primmer on face -- gay rights specifically focusedded on voters to do two things, challenge the religious right on its own turf and show that much of what is deer -- what they call is the gay agenda is consistent with republican and libertarian principles. number two, to center right voters who believe in social tolerance that not only are they not a voice in the wilderness, but represent a majority of ranking file republican voters. there's three things. the first i eluded to that many on the right don't understand that properly understood gay rights are perfectly compatible
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with prince les of limited government, individual rights, and equal protection of the laws. the government does not dull out rights depending on what religion you are, what economic class you're in, what your gender is, or theoretically, at least, what your sexual orientation is. at least that's the way it's supposed to be. certainly, most libertarians get that and they have a special obligation to teach fellow conservatives and right of center voters why gay and lesbian americans deserve the same rights as everybody else. the second main theme of the book is because of the constant over the top rhetoric heard from the religious right, most people have little understanding of what ranking file republicans believe on gay issues.
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i think the conventional wisdom is that all republicans hate gays, they are opposed to gay rights, and nothing could be further from the truth. watch this and other programs online at
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>> we had this incredible inability to digest information,
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process, and then operate. we started to get where we could be a little bit faster, but we developed a system called f3ea, for find, fix, finish, exploit, and analyze. that's a cycle you go through. find somebody, fix them in a location at a time now, finish by capturing or killing, exploit whatever you capture, you analyze that, and you learn from it. it's basically a learning cycle, learning in action, and we'd do that, and we would go through that process that it was slow because we were operating with different organizations, not all organic to mind and different agencies, intelligence agencies, and whatnot. this may surprise you, but not all parts of government work together seamlessly. [laughter] here we are as this cycle, and we have this things, what we call blinks between the parts so one element finds a target, but by the time the information gets to the people who fix it,
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usually with a predator or something like that to make sure they are there then, time would have passed, and accuracy of information fidelity would have passed. then it's passed over to the rate force, again, you'd have a loss. it's like the game, telephone, where you whisper around the room, and you can't tell what it is by the fifth person. it's madness. it's not going to work. we started -- we went on a campaign to fix the process, bringing in parts of the organization, building intelligence capacity, giving ourselves a mind set that was different before, and before it was as much each element did its part of the process, and then they could take great pride. we succeeded. we did what we were told, and we wiped that clean and said nobody is successful unless the whole process works. the definition of winning is the same for all of us, only if we win this fight. that was different than what we had. by the summer, things got bad starting in late march of 2004
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in iraq, and that's when the country basically melted down, and we started operating as hard as we could and up tempod to operational temperature poet. that's how fast you can operate. we realized the size of the network that we had to hit it a lot, and we could not hit it once a month, and by august of 2004, we gopt up to 18 raids a month or about one every other night, and we thought we moved at warp speed, i mean, literally thought it was the most amazing thing we've done. we are the most efficient and effective special operations task force on the face of the earth. we were. we were still losing. we came to the conclusion that we've got to speed up more. there was a fixation ongoing after the senior leaders of the organization or they called high value targeting, decapitation, and we game to -- came to the conclusion it would
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not work. we started with the idea if we got it, the whole thing would fall apart. if the key person is taken out, does it get worse? worked in the pentagon, it would have got better. [laughter] go after the people who do work, lo gist ticks, communication, pass information, build bombs, communicate. take those out. there was a strategy, and i used to tell people it's like rocky balboa and apollo creed. hit them in the midsection and hit them a lot. from august of 2004 when we did 18 raids two years later, we did 300 raids a month. that's ten a night. if you top and say ten a night is impressive, that mean every raid guy on the force goes on at least one raid every night. every pilot's flying one or two
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raids every night. these raids are not patrolled. these are going in the door, somebody's getting shot. extraordinary. to do that, though, you can't use previous systems. you have to bring in intelligence on an industrial scale. we got to the point where instead of the plastic bags of information on a target, we would start to exploit their computers, their phones, take biometric data, pumped back to west virginia right from the target to see if we had that person before, and if we had even had any dealings with him. we would move the documents back immediately, scan them, send them to multiple places in the u.s. and theater and everybody analyzed it at the same time, and we tried to turn this to learn as quickly as we could, and we got to the point where we could hit three targets a night from the initial intelligence. we'd find joe smith at nine
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o'clock at night because we had been looking for him. we would find out from what we got on that target about john doe. we might hit that at midnight, and we'd had another at three in the morning. the reason television important to go fast is because terrorist networks repair themselves very quickly. as soon as -- if we were terrorists, as soon as mark is captured, pretty soon i'm going to hear about it, and the first thing i do is move locations, change my -- all those things, connections that i have, and you call it cut outs because it moves to repair itself. you have to be quicker than they can repair themselves, both the hit targets, and, also, quicker than they promote people up and develop new leaders. overtime, we saw the relative age of leaders in al-qaeda and iraq go down and relative effectiveness go down because of that. the tempo was the rocky strategy of pummel it as fast as you can so it can't breathe, and
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overtime, have the effect on it, which we did along with another factors. >> watch this and other programs online at [inaudible conversations] >> "ike's bluff" looks at the policy decisions made by president eisenhower, and he argues he saved america during the cold war. mr. thomas is just about to be introduced. >> i'm laura, and, today, there's 36 authors speaking in
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six different venues around the square, and all authors sign their books at the book sales tent in the middle of the square following the presentation. part of the proceeds from the book festival and this book sale goes to support next year's festival so we hope you'll visit the tent, pick up books, meet the authors, and have the books sign. all the events today are free of charge and open to the public thanks to the support of the city of savannah, the department of culture affairs, the festival sponsors, and if you enjoyed today's presentation, there's an opportunity to make a donation as you exit in the back. can you take a moment to check your cell phones are silent or turned off.
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c-span's booktv is broadcasting this live to the nation today. we cherish their support. be on your best behavior, and give c-span a round of applause. this is sponsored by mr. and mrs. jack ramona, and evan thomas is sponsored by mr. and mason white. evan thomas is a former reporter and editor for "time" and "news week," and covered every election for "news week," and edited "politico's" series on e-books, and wrote about roosevelt, kennedy, and the cia,
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and he's just begun work on a biography of richard nickon. this book, "ike's bluff" is about eisenhower's white house years. i'm excited to introduce to you today, mr. evan thomas. >> what a great festival it this is. i was moved by jack tapper here before by his presentation, and i think the book i wrote is actually relevant. i wrote a book about the warrior, determined to keep us out of war, but before i talk about my book, they asked me to talk about the career, and i will.
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i was asked to write, and i brought it to my father to read, and i came from breakfast, and he said, it's awful. [laughter] that's our entire conversation. i applied to law school that afternoon. [laughter] this is a a pree before parents believedded in self-esteem. it was awful. it was a mercy killing. [laughter] i went to law school, it was good because i married my wife who i met in civil procedure class, but it helped me to think better, to spot the issue, helped my writing. i knew that i didn't want to be a lawyer. i wrote as freelance writing, my mother called it up employment. i had an article rejected, and
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my wife saw me cry, but i was hired by time in 197 # 7. i spent 33 years at time and news week, and that's where i really learnedded how to write. to keep it simple, try to be clear, try to draw the reader into the story, above all, to tell the story. washington bureau chief for ten years in the late 80s and 90s. wrote a lot of cover stories, had fun, but news magazine journalism is group, and i started writing books, and in the 1980s, my friend and colleague, who was here last year, asked me to write a book about the old foreign policy establishment, and we wrote "the wisemen: six friends of the world they made," getting us both into writing books. walter, who is amazing, when i
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went to be the head of time and the run away hit, best seller last year, steve jobs. there's a world world war ii bok called "sea of thunder," and the spanish american war called the war lovers. i enjoyed them all, and one of them actually made some money. [laughter] one of the great things about being a journalist is you can write on almost any subject if you're curious and put in the time. when the world war ii generation took on the awesome responsibility, really, in a way of running the world.
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there's a fantastic story of pride and arrogance and idealism, realism, and cynicism, and intentionally human story for what interested me more than policy or grand strategy was the human dimension, how people operate. the emphasis has been on specialized stuff, race, class, gender studies, social history and so forth, not on what they call dead white males, not on diplomats or generals or the like, but i'm interested in positions of people in power, interested to know what's it like for them? what is it like at the top? what motivates them, what is going on in their minds? this gets me to dwight
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eisenhower. andy goodpastor, general andrew goodpastor, had be the closest aid to president eisenhower, staff secretary, but really the closest adds visier on national security affairs including all things nuclear. he told me friend in the years working for ike, the president had never told him when, if ever, he would be willing to use nuclear bombs. goodpastor doubted if ike would use it, but ike never told him. i thought, wow, talk about the loneliness of command. the awesome, awesome responsibility of having that power. it sounds grand, by, actually, it's true. it's not grand to say that dwight eisenhower was the first
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person in the history of the world to have the power to wreck mankind, october at least the northern hemisphere. he came to the prosecute sigh developing these incredible, frightening weapons and missiles to launch them. of course, the soviets were doing the same, and this created an unbelievable challenge for eisenhower. it was further complicated for eisenhower because he knew from the own experience that little wars have a way of becoming big wars. the politicians who think they can fight limited wars, who want to gradually escalate, who think they can control war are kidding themselves. ike was determined to stay out of any war, which he did. he got us out of the korean war, he never again sent american troops into combat. no other mod earn president can make that claim. little known fact?
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as president ike cut the defense budget by 20%. ike was no isolationist and didn't think america could retreat to its shores and think it could go away. he believed america had to stand up to communism, strength p the alliance to defie soviet expansionism. how? he basically bluffed with nuclear weapons. he made it clear to the sovietings and red chie nays that if they advanced, the united states would respond with nuclear weapons and did it through many crisis and places around the world, berlin, southeast asia, china. i won't go into how he did this. read the book for that. ike was a great poker player, and, indeed, so good as a young army officer, he gave the game up because he was tooking too much money from the fellow officers and it was hurting his career. [laughter] he said, let me talk for a moment about the human dimension
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of eisenhower. now, ike had a huge ego. you don't get to be supreme allied commander without a very big ego. he had a very big temper. when he blew up, it was like peering into a steel furnace, one of the aids said. his mother was a fundamentalist christian. she would quote scripture to her son saying, he who conquers his own soul is greater than he who takes a city. my mother taught me how to control my temper. i thought, what a poor job she had done, said one of the aids. [laughter] ike learned to control the temper and more important, his ego. he said this he got ahead by disguising intention and ambition and learned from working as chief of staff from the great general douglas mcarthur who was proud and glorious and boastful. ike learned whatnot to do.
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you know these days you see generals, medals hanging by their chest. look at ike. he's wearing maybe one ribbon. when he died, he wanted to be buried with no decorations and an 80 dollar soldier cough fin. he learned to keep smiling. that smile, especially when things were going badly. at westpoint where boxing was required in 1914, he was taking a boxing lesson, and the instructor knocked him down, and he feels put out. the instructor stopped the fight said if you can't get up smiling, you're never going to lick me. it was an important lesson. flash forward 30 years to the battle of the bulge. germans in the last desperate expert broke through the lines, and tanks encircle the americans. there's a lot of defeatism and dispair and allied headquarters. the one guy who was smiling is eisenhower. he says this is an opportunity
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to cut them off. general pat ton was in the room, got the message, joking, sure, let him go to paris and really slice him up. [laughter] ike had an enormous sense of responsibility. he knew how to take responsibility. you know that famous photograph of ike with the paratrooper before d-day, you see ike in the regular uniform, and the paraj troopers have the gear op, and they are getting ready to jump behind german lines that night. why did ike go there? he was told that they were not coming back, that 70% of the trooperers were expected to die. he wanted to look them in the eye before sending them to the fates, and he had a letter that was written that if the d-day landings failed the next day, the responsibility was his alone. that's the sense of responsibility you don't always see today in modern generals and
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leaders. when ike came back from europe, he was change. unsurprisingly. he was deeper, more remote, more spiritual, said his wife, and he wanted to be religious. in fact, before cabinet meetings, he insisted there be a prayer, but sometimes he'd forget, and start the meeting, and the secretary of state, secretary dulles, nudged the president, and ike said, jesus christ, we forgot the prayer! [laughter] eisenhower knew when to lay low, and not to panic. you may, some of you were alive here for sputnik, 1957, the soviets launched the first sat little, and there was all kinds of hysteria in the united states. people were afraid the russians would lob bombs on us from outer space, and the country was just in a bad way. there was tremendous pressure,
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particularly interesting from liberal democrats to spend more on defense, build up defense, more rockets and planes. ike resisted. this is before he gave his famous speech about the military industrial complex, but he already knew. he'd been in the pentagon. he said, i know those boys in the pentagon, and he knew they hyped the threat, that if they wanted weapon systems they didn't necessarily need, they would find an excuse to get them, and he knew enough to resist, and this is a very hard thing to do in the winter of 1958 when everybody is banging on him to build more weapons and build up our forces. ..
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>> he was a very smart guy. but in his press conferences, he often would speak in a kind of rambling, slightly incoherent way. it was intentional. once before a press conference in 1955 and aides were saying, oh, you've got to be careful about this question. and he said, oh, don't worry, i'll just confuse them. [laughter] and he did. i notice his memos were all clear as a bell. he was a very clear thinker. but when he needed to, he could play dumb. most people i know, certainly me and most politicians i know, want to be the smartest guy in the room. eisenhower did not suffer from that. he was seen, afghanistan, as a -- of course, as a genial,
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golf-playing figure. he's still seen that way. the kennedys were brilliant about setting up this foil, this contrast. it was very useful to them. think about it. eisenhower old, grandfatherly, golf player, a little bit out of it. jack kennedy, young, vigorous, dynamic. it was a very useful foil. now, it really wasn't true. scholars have known for a long, long time that, actually, behind the scenes eisenhower was very powerful, that he knew how to manipulate people, he could be pretty brutal, actually, about it. but he operated by what a princeton professor many years ago called the hidden hand theory of government. he was very adept -- i guess he learned this through his military career -- at operating behind the scenes so you couldn't really see his hand at work. all of this is interesting political science, but again, i'm interested in the human dimension here. and i spent a lot of time with ike's son, john, who's 90 years
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old but has all his marbles, and we were talking about the balance between the genial ike and the cold-blooded ike. and i said, you know, 50/50? and john eisenhower said make that 75% cold-blooded. this is his son, we're talking about. richard nixon, who was eisenhower's vice president, said that eisenhower was more complicated and devious than most people realize, and then nixon said i mean devious in the best sense of the word. [laughter] now, ike was human. the stress did get to him. he had a heart attack in 1955, a stroke in 1957, chronic stomach problems, a stomach operation in 1956. one of the most useful records of ike's life is the diary that was kept by his personal doctor, howard snyder.
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and the diary's very explicit about the medications and his mood. they were worried about his mood, because they were afraid that high blood pressure and that he would pop a cork, and it would give him another heart attack. so the doctors were always telling eisenhower not to worry so much, and he would say just what do you think this job is? of course he worried. he had a lot to worry about. and he occasionally erupted. he threw his golf club at his doctor and almost broke his leg, not exactly great sportsmanship, but it was on the same day that eisenhower was deciding whether or whether or not to do a u2 flight over the soviet union. he was under unbelievable stress, and he was human. it showed. golf, eisenhower played a lot of golf. 800 times. golf is maybe not the world's best game for perfectionists. some of you probably know that. and he was a little grim about it. he was a complicated man, as great men are. they have responsibilities that i think we can't imagine.
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they may not be able to control the great, sweeping forces of history, but they can have some impact. in the early years of the nuclear age, we were lucky to have had dwight eisenhower. he had a great quality, the confidence to be humble. he understood that arrogant men are often actually weak and fearful, they're hiding to cover up their fear. but the truly confident men are humble. they have the strength not to show off, to give credit to others, to accept and forgive even themselves. when eisenhower was dying, he was asked by his family how he should be memorialized, he answered just don't let them put me on a horse. [laughter] he was, i think, a great president. the 1950s were an era of peace and prosperity. by god, ike once said, it didn't just happen. thank you very much. [applause]
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we have plenty of time for questions, so fire away. >> raise your hand, and i'll head your way. >> i'm nancy from savannah. >> hi. >> i wanted -- hi. i wanted to know if the general's reaction to the cuban missile crisis, i read the book. i'm trying to figure out for myself if president kennedy had the same poker face. >> uh-huh, yeah. well, it's interesting, let me start at the end. it's a good thing the cuban missile crisis happened in october 1962 after kennedy had been president for a couple years than, say, in the winter of 1961. kennedy learned on the job. but he was a callow youth when he got in. he'd been a lieutenant jg in
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world war ii, and you may all recall that before there was a cuban missile crisis, there was a bay of pigs. and that was an operation that was organized by eisenhower. but eisenhower, who was very careful about the use of force, i believe, never would have authorized it not the way jack kennedy did; no air cover, happen happen -- happen has art. eisenhower was a all or nothing guy, and kennedy, not knowing any better, tried to do it halfway. and on the night that the cuban exiles were pushed into the sea, kennedy was weeping in his bed in the white house, and he called eisenhower and asked if they could meet at camp david. and eisenhower got up there and started quizzing him on how kennedy went about authorizing the invasion at the bay of pigs. and he discovered it had been kind of haphazard. interestingly, when the kennedys came in, they thought that the stodgy eisenhower administration
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had way too many committees and organizing groups, too many colonels doing plans. the ivy league, harvard guys around jack kennedy, they were, mac bundy, those people, they could kind of wing with it because they were smart. and they let themselves get led astray by a wonderful character in history named richard bissell, and he gave a private dinner for them at the little club in washington and said i'm your basic man-eating shark. they loved that in the kennedy white house. so the next thing you knew, we were invading cuba with this exile force, and it was completely shattered. now, to kennedy's credit, when he had this fiasco and he dried his tears, he went out and said victory has a thousand fathers, but defeat is an orphan. i am responsible. so he took the responsibility, and actually his poll ratings -- a lesson for politicians, his poll ratings went way up from that. but he also listened closely to
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eisenhower about how you talk to the military. he'd made the mistake, kennedy had asked the joint chiefs what do you think about this invasion of cuba, and they said, sure, fine. what they meant was it's not our responsibility. it's a cia operation. [laughter] and they, eisenhower knew how to listen to the secret dog whistle, you know? when the military says yes when they really mean it and when they don't. and he tutored. and kennedy said, you know, next time i'm not going to make that mistake. well, two years later kennedy learned on the job. i think he became a great president. i don't think he was a great president when he won election. i think he was a good looking guy, glamorous and inspirational, but i don't think he was a great prime minister. by the fall of '62 i think he had learned, and i've actually listened to the tapes, the kennedy -- the cuban missile crisis lasted for 13 days, and they had these meetings of this committee that the president put together to deal with it. secret meetings. and the tapes are fascinating, was about half of -- because about half of these meetings
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were recorded. in the tapes these were all middle-aged men, in those days all men, and they were trying not to seem panicked. so their voices are very steady and even, and they talk about we might have to evacuate the southeastern part of the united states in the event of or war, all these grim conversations delivered in this easy, steady manner until the last day. on the 13th day the voices is are starting to get squeaky. [laughter] and you can hear it, mcnamara's rambling. the one guy who sounds steady is jfk. it's really sort of what you want the movie i version of the president to be. his voice is calm and steady. he'd made some mistakes, a lot of mistakes along the way, but he's a pretty calm guy. and, meanwhile, they're doing a back room deal to save face. they're trading away some missiles, and they're not blustering, they're not about to invade. by now kennedy's figured out he's got to get out of this
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mess, and he makes the deal to do it. so that's a long answer to your questionment -- question. >> you've written about eisenhower, and you're writing about nixon. what did the former really think about the latter? [laughter] >> that's gary wills asking this question who knows something about this subject. i feel sorry for richard nixon because when eisenhower made him vice president, he barely knew him. it really was expedient. nixon could deliver the california delegation to eisenhower in the '52 convention, and he was a bridge to the republican right. and republican -- excuse me, eisenhower was a moderate republican and had a very vigorous right wing, some things never change. the republican right, we think the republican right is fierce today, imagine when it had joe mccarthy as its lieutenant. so he needed an ambassador. and nixon was that ambassador.
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but eisenhower's always cold with nixon. you may remember the famous checker speech? that was because there was a phony scandal, this little slush fund that really didn't amount to anything, but it blew up. you know, the press was just as crazy then and avaricious then as it is now, and they blew up this phony scandal about nixon's slush fund. and instead of defending nixon, eisenhower let him twist in the wind and, basically, defend himself. so nix sob went out -- nixon went out and gave this famous speech that was very effective to save his job about his dog, checkers, and it was the famous checkers speech. biggest tv audience in history at the time. and it worked. but eisenhower never -- finally, eisenhower finally said patronizingly to nixon, you're my poi -- you're my boy. eisenhower tried to drive nixon off the ticket in '56, and nixon hung in there, sort of refused to be maneuvered off.
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and then in 1960 when eisenhower was running for, excuse me, when nixon's running for president and he's to succeed eisenhower, august 1960, a close race, and in a press conference a reporter asked president eisenhower or can you tell us something that vice president nixon did to help foreign policy? and eisenhower says, well, if you give me a week, i'll think of something. [laughter] pretty cruel. pretty cruel. now, eisenhower immediately felt terrible about it and apologized but, man, you can't undo that kind of damage. [laughter] so, yeah, i think -- i feel sorry for dick nixon. i think eisenhower was pretty bad to his vice president. sir? >> hi, jim casey, savannah. eisenhower may not have sent any troops into combat, but a lot of what he and his state department did certainly laid the groundwork for the disaster in vietnam starting with -- being
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installed as president and sending advisers over there in the late '50s. any comments on that? >> yeah, sure. eisenhower is not blameless on vietnam, but in 1954 when the french were failing there at dien bien phu, there was tremendous pressure to send in ground troops from his own, in fact, his own general wanted to use tactical nuclear weaponses as did secretary of state john foster dulles as did richard nixon. and eisenhower said if we send troops, the jungle will consume an army birdie visions. i mean -- by divisions. i mean, he knew how badly an asian land war can go. and his view always was -- he was an all or nothing guy. now, it is true -- and dulles had a lot to do with this -- that when the french got driven out and vietnam was split into two, we backed the south, and we did start putting advisers in
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there, that's true. but judging by eisenhower's beliefs and statements after he got out, i think -- i know that his view on vietnam was all or nothing. that that if you're going to do this, go in all the way. he advised president johnson and president kennedy and president johnson either declare war all the way, bomb hanoi or don't do it. but politicians don't think that way. they think by half measures and compromise. they believed in gradual steps and gradual escalation. so kennedy introduces not just more -- i think there were about 8,000 advisers when kennedy came in, quickly it became 35,000 advisers then ground troops, gradually ratcheting it i up. lbj, same thing. more and more combat troops but never going all the way. and eisenhower thought that was a big mistake. now, he always supported the presidents, ken canty and then johnson, because he was a great patriot, he believed in the presidency, but he said johnson
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is using me, trotting me out as a former president to support him when he didn't really support hip. he didn't like the anti-war protesters. you can imagine how dwight eisenhower felt about long-haired hippies and anti-war protesters. but he was not in favor of our strategy in vietnam. >> [inaudible] >> thank you. >> [inaudible] brought eisenhower in, and i thought -- [inaudible] he didn't want to tell kennedy don't do it. but he alluded to it. my question to you is do you think if he hadn't played that over again, he would have been stronger about -- [inaudible] >> yes. i think that eisenhower did a poor job of briefing kennedy on that. they talked about laos was the issue at the time. and eisenhower basically said -- he used one of his poker analogies. he basically said you've got to
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bluff 'em. but he was not very explicit. and the way the kennedys read that meeting was that they had approval to do whatever they wanted to do from eisenhower. you know, i think eisenhower by 1960 he was not in great shape. i mean, he'd had a couple of heart attacks, and he was having an extra drink or two at night and taking an extra sleeping pill. he'd been serving his country, he was 70 years old, the oldest living president at the time, he'd been serving his country ever since west point, and he was exhausted. he didn't love kennedy, he thought he was a young whippersnapper, as he called him, and i don't think he did such a great job of briefing him. so i think it's a fair question. sir. >> you're in savannah, georgia, so i think i'd -- we'd be remiss if we didn't ask you to at least comment on eisenhower's decisions on some of the civil rights matters that arose, particularly those that resulted in his use of the military. >> uh-huh. >> in intervening. >> yep, yep. my book is mostly about ike's
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foreign policy, but i do address the civil rights thing because i think it's relevant to his leadership style and, obviously, it's important. eisenhower has taken grief from a lot of historians over the years for not being terribly -- not being a good leader on civil rights, on not using the bully pulpit. now, it is true eisenhower did not take to the bully pulpit. he did not like moral posturing, and he also believed that change had to come slowly. but, but typical eisenhower, hat in hand, he did all kinds of things behind the scenes. truman wrote the order desegregating the armed services, but it was eisenhower that did it. eisenhower desegregated the district of columbia, eisenhower supported the 1957 civil rights act. johnson gets the credit for it, but eisenhower was the guy who was doing it. the administration in brown v. board of education which is the famous desegregation case was on the side of desegregation.
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eisenhower's administration took that position. eisenhower appointed all the federal judges who enforced those desegregation orders, a lot of great, famous judges. these were all eisenhower appointees. and when a state governor, orville falbis of arkansas, defied a federal judge in 1957, eisenhower didn't kid around, he sent in the 101st airborne. no national guard. airborne, bayonets drawn, to make sure that order was enforced. so in his own way he was vigorous on civil rights, and his view was the country wasn't ready for a whole lot of moral posturing from the president yet. but he did, he took a lot of steps that were important down that, down that road. yep. >> [inaudible] how would you --
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[inaudible] eisenhower would have racketed -- [inaudible] -- reacted -- >> i think eisenhower would not have been a fan of nation building. because i do think he thinks it's creep. it's an incremental act, you get sucked in. eisenhower had deep appreciation for the seductive nature of war, that war is a kind of mutating monster. humans, leaders think they can control wars, but they can't. because, ultimately, people will do anything once their safety is threatened, they're going to pick up any stick, any rock, use any weapon they can. so eisenhower was very much wary of getting involved into small wars. he had a lot of opportunities over formosas, taiwan, in vietnam, korea was always threatening to blow up -- berlin was the big one. in 1958 nikita kruschev, the
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soviet leader, delivered an ultimatum. he said the west had six months to get out of berlin or else. and there was all sorts of a cry in western europe and the united states, we've got to get ready to fight the russians on the ground, conventional forces. well, eisenhower knew that that was nuts, that that wasn't going to work. and so he cut our forces in berlin by 50,000, and everybody's going what are you doing? it just doesn't make any sense. and at a national security council meeting he said, here's the thing. we are not going to do any gradual -- he used a poker analogy. we're not going to start with a white chips conventional forces moving up to the blue chips, nuclear weapons. if the russians start this war, we will end it. he said our whole stack is in play. and he said this is not going to be some nice, sweet world war ii kind of war. it's going to be nuclear war. he bluffed. and, now, that's not a bluff that every president can get
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away with. it helps if you're dwight eisenhower, the supreme allied commander who had liberated europe. but, so i don't think this is necessarily a strategy that can be emulated by others, but it worked for eisenhower. and he was just -- and he was under tremendous pressure to have conventional forces to be willing to fight, you know, a temporary war. and he wasn't going to do that because he thought it would get out of control. and he really is, he's the only american president who got, sent no troops into combat. once he got us out of korea, it took three months, but once he got us out by threatening with nuclear weapons, he never committed another soldier into combat. i think we lost one american soldier in the next seven and a half years. somebody died in lebanon. but that was it. no other president can say that. >> [inaudible] >> sure. i mean, eisenhower loved the military. it was his life. he loved the army. when he left the white house, he
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gave up the title mr. president to become general eisenhower again. i mean, kennedy thought this was nuts. who would ever do that? so he loved the army. but when he was president, he cut the hell out of the army. his own service. why? because he wasn't ever going to use it. he did build up, he knew he had to build up our nuclear forces, and the icbm was coming in and, you know, he knew we had to stay ahead of the russians on that front, so he spent the money on that. but he just didn't spend the money. and his old comrades in arms in world war ii were just furious. ridgeway was the army chief of staff, max taylor, they basically accused their own president of treason. we always think the good old days when everybody got along. it's not true. the services were always fighting with each other. you had army chiefs of staff in congressional testimony accusing the president of something close
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the treason. there was plenty of friction in the old days. ike just -- he did it. he knew that, because he knew that to have true national security you had to have a sound economy. and he was determined not to overspend. in those days military spending was 70% of the federal budget. today it's less than 20. but in 19 -- this is, you know, 1950s, this is before social security, medicare, all that, before social spending had consumed great chunks of the budget, so the money was in defense. and if you wanted to balance the budget, you had to control, and he actually cut defense spending during a period of tremendous threat because he wanted, he believed the economy needed to be a balance of resources and commitments, and the economy did great this eisenhower's time. we had enormous job growth, and, you know, partly because the united states was the sole super power, but he was, managed a very healthy economy by
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controlling military costs which easily could have gotten out of control. and that was the genesis of that speech. the famous speech he gave about the military industrial complex was his farewell address january 1961. but he'd actually been working on the problem all along. sir. >> um, could you talk a little about eisenhower's relationship with england and france during the suez? >> sure. as some of you will recall, in 1956 nasser, who was an arab nationalist who was the head of egypt, seized the suez canal which had been british and french. and france and britain in a last gasp of their empire wanted to get it back. so they conspired with israel to do a secret attack on egypt. in the fall of 1956. a joint attack. israeli forces, french forces and british forces. they did not tell the united
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states. and our crack cia missed it. [laughter] so what was eisenhower going to do about it? he shut it down. he may have a -- he may have bea hidden hand guy, but he said he thought it was -- he was rightly worried that it would draw the russians in, and we were going to get a nuclear war in the middle east if he didn't stop it, and he stopped it. and the way he did it was to say to the british, you know, your oil's about to get cut off. don't come looking to us for oil. he said you can boil in your own oil. pretty harsh. and so he cut off and it meant that all of europe was going to go dark in about two weeks. and he also quietly caused a little run on the pound just to reinforce the message. and the brits got it, and within two days the invasion was over. he just shut it down. now, it takes unbelievable force of will, you know, i wish the united states had that kind of power today. we don't. but he basically just terminated
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this invasion. and he did it even though these were his old pals from world war ii. this is anthony eden who was the prime minister of -- who had been a great friend of ike's in london during the war. eisenhower when he had -- he was a smiling, warm, genial guy, but when he had to be cold-blooded, he was. sir. >> [inaudible] >> sure. sure. eisenhower was a great fan of washington and lee because they took care of their troops. that was a big thing to him, they took good care of their troops. but interestingly on lee, eisenhower lived in gettysburg, and his farm backs that ridge where all the confederate forces formed on the third day of the battle of gettysburg, where picket's charge was organized. and eisenhower would give tours of the battlefield on foot.
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and he would recall that, i think it was on july 2nd, the 2nd day of battle, picket came to leave and said i want to charge the union line the next day with all of our forces. and lee said do it if you can. take it if you can. and eisenhower thought that was a tremendous dereliction of of duty on the part of lee. why? because it was sort of -- well, if you can do it, sure, you know? eisenhower's view was you have to be absolutely sure you can do it or don't do out. it was the worst kind of military leadership. so even though he revered the sainted lee, he thought at the critical moment lee gave exactly the wrong order. he was too con jekyll chul. it was a possibility, well, he was too fatalistic about it. eisenhower was one of those generals who believed in unfair fights, you know? we have all the advantage and they don't. those are the fights that eisenhower wanted to fight, and so he was quite critical of lee. but he worshiped him as a
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commander who was a decent and honorable man and took good care of his troops. >> how did eisenhower deal with the dulles brothers all those years? >> how did eisenhower deal with the dulles brothers? they were a pain in the ass for him. [laughter] particularly -- well, john foster was his secretary of state, and john foster was a very bombastic, pietistic type. and the press which was as lazy then as they are sometimes today actually believed that dulles was in charge of foreign policy. he budget. ike -- he budget. ike was in charge of foreign policy. but it was useful to use dulles as the bad cop. so the famous massive retaliation speech in which dulles said if the soviets try anything, basically, we're going to nuke 'em or words to that effect, everybody thought that was dell lues' speech. we found out years later by looking in the speech files thattizen hour had written
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the -- that eisenhower had written the key paragraph. but he wanted dulles to give the speech. so it was useful for ike to use john foster dulles as sort of the heavy. now, dulles occasionally got a little too heavy and said things that were incendiary and problematic. more problematic for ike was alan dulles, john foster dulles' brother who was the head of cia. a relationship entirely too cozy. and alan dulles was a huge risk taker. and at first some of these risks seemed to work. the coups in guatemala and iran which today look horrible but at the time looked like a way to contain communism on the cheap. they looked like they worked, they were success. this sure is better than sending in whole armies to do this. but, of course, they don't look so good today. and later on there were failed coups in indonesia and syria, and the cia got too big for its
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britches can ask of out of control, and eisenhower should have fired alan dulles, but he didn't. he said when people powld pressure him, ike, to get rid of dulles, he would say it takes a strange kind of genius to run the cia. and he wasn't wrong about that, but he regretted not having fired dulles at the end when the cia that some of you have read the book know this story, but eisenhower all through his presidency realized that you could build all the weapons you want, but you really had to have some kind of a detente with the soviet union. we had to have some kind of peaceful coexistence. so he was working towards a grand summit meeting to try to bring down these cold war tensions and start arms control. and he was on the verge of a summit in paris in may of 1960 with kruschev to do that when the u2 spy plane got shot down. and it was just tragic, because it blew up the summit. what he didn't know, what eisenhower didn't know and i guess later found out was the
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cia had suppressed a study showing that the soviet anti-aircraft missiles were now powerful enough to get up there and shut down the u2. richard bissell, the guy i mentioned earlier, didn't tell ike that. because the cia was just kind of out of control in those day, and it was a tragic oversight. eisenhower went to -- after francis gary powers, remember that name? the u2, the cia guy, he was captured by the russians. the cia had told ike that if the plane is shot down, plane will break up, or the pilot will take the suicide pill and kill himself. didn't happen. russians got powers. powers was splashed all over soviet tv, and eisenhower came into his office that miles an houring and said i want to -- that morning and said i want to resign. he got over it, eisenhower always bounced back, but it shows you how shaken he was. because he knew it was derailing this chance of really putting a lid on the cold war. and, indealed, this was the beginning of the most dangerous
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period of the cold war. the danger period for all of us really was from that summer of 1960 to about october 1962. that's when the world was actually at risk of a nuclear conflagration. >> i think that's about all the time that we have. we will be signing books in the tent directory in the square -- directly in the square afterwards, so we appreciate you guys coming. let's give a hand. [applause] >> thank you. [inaudible conversations] >> and you've been watching and listening to booktv's live coverage of the sixth annual savannah book festival in savannah, georgia. coming up next in just a few minutes, historian gary wills,
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and we'll be right back with live coverage. >> here are some of the latest headlines surrounding the publishing industry this past week. mcmillan will pay up to $20 million to setal price-fixing suit in a consolidated consumer class action lawsuit. the publisher, along with fellow publishing groups simon & schuster, hard per collins and the penguin group, was accused of working with apple to unfairly adjust prices of e-books to compete with amazon. the u.s. justice department concluded the pricing method eliminated competition in the e-book market. all publishers have denied accusations of illegal act tate, but three have already gone through with their state settlements with he shed agreeing to pay $31 million, harpercollins $19 million and simon & schuster about $17 million. the justice department has approved a merger of publishers random house and penguin without conditions. the united states is the first country to approve the merger
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with the review still in progress in europe and canada. the publishers say they expect the her very to be closed later this year. and according to the u.s. census bureau, book sales for the year 2012 decreased by .5%. that's the smallest decline in years. the bureau reports that book sales were at $15.21 billion last year, slightly less than that recorded in 2011. stay up-to-date on breaking news about authors, books and publishing by liking us on facebook at, or follow us on twitter @booktv. you can also visit our web site,, and click on news about books. >> this system of mass incarceration is now so deeply rooted in our social, political and economic structure that it is not going to just fade away or downsize out of sight. without a major upheaval, a
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fairly radical shift in our public consciousness. now, i know that there's many people today who will say, you know, there's no hope of ending mass incarceration in america. no, no. there's no hope. pick another issue. just as many people were resigned to jim crow in the south and would say, yeah, yeah, that's a shame, it's a shame, but that's just the way that it is, i find that so many people today view the millions cycling in and out of our prisons and jails today as just an unfortunate but inalterable fact of american life. well, i'm quite certain that dr. king would not have been so resigned. so i believe that if we are truly, truly to honor dr. king, if we are to ever catch up with king, we have got to be willing
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to continue his work. we have got to be willing to go back and pick up where he left off and do the hard work of movement building on behalf of poor people of all colors. in 1968 dr. king told advocates the time had come to transition from a civil rights movement to a human rights movement. meaningful equality, he said, could not be achieved through civil rights alone. without basic human rights, the right to work, the right to shelter, the right to quality education, without basic human rights, he said, civil rights are an empty promise. so in honor of dr. king and all those who labored to end the old jim crow, i hope we will commit ourselves to building a human rights movement to end mass incarceration. a movement for education, not incarceration. a movement for jobs, not jails. a movement to end all these
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forms of legal discrimination against people. discrimination that denies them basic human rights to work, to shelter and to food. now, what must we do to begin this movement? well, first i believe we've got to begin by telling the truth, the whole truth. we've got to be willing to admit out loud that we as a nation have managed to recreate a caste-like system in this country. we've got to be willing to tell this truth in our schools, in our churches, in our places of worship, behind bars in and in reentry centers. we've got to be willing to tell this truth so that a great awakening to the reality of what has occurred can come to pass. because the reality is that this new caste-like system, it doesn't come with signs. there are no whites-only signs anymore. there are no signs today alerting us to the existence of the system of of mass
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incarceration. and prisons today, they are out of sight and out of mind. often hundreds of miles away from communities and families that might otherwise be connected to them. and the people who cycle in and out of these prisons typically live in segregated, impoverished communities, communities that middle class folks, upper middle class folks rarely come across. so you can live your whole life in america today having no idea that this system is of mass incarceration and the harm it wreaks even exists. so we have got to be willing to tell the truth about what has occurred, pull back the curtain and make visible what is hidden in plain sight. so that an awakening can begin.
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and people can begin to take the kind of creative, constructive action that this moment in our history surely requires. but, of course, a lot of talk and consciousness raising isn't going to be enough. we've got to be willing to get to work. and in my view, that means we have got to be willing to build ap underground railroad for people -- an underground railroad for people released from prison. an upside ground railroad for people who want to make a genuine break for real freedom. people who want to escape the system and find work, find shelter, be able to support their families, find a true freedom. in america today. we have got to be willing to open our homes, open our schools, open our workplaces to people returning home from prison and provide safe spaces as a port for the families who have loved ones behind bars today. how do we create these safe places?
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well, one thing we can certainly do, we can begin to admit our own criminality out loud, our own criminality. because the truth is we've all made mistakes in our lives. we all have. all of us are sinners, all of us have done wrong, all of us have broken the law at some point in our lives. if you're an adult, you've broken the law at some point many your life. finish in your life. now, i find that some people will say, oh, yeah, i'm a sinner, i've made mistakes, but don't call me a criminal. don't call me a criminal. i say, okay, well, maybe you never drank underage. maybe you never experimented with drugs. well, if the worst thing you've done in your entire life is speed 10 miles over the speed limit on the freeway, you've put yourself and others at more risk of harm than someone smoking marijuana in the privacy of
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their living room. but there are people in the united states serving life sentences for first-time drug offenses. life sentences. the u.s. supreme court upheld life sentences for first-time drug offenders against an eighth amendment challenge that such sentences were cruel and unusual in violation of the eighth amendment, and the u.s. supreme court said, no, no, it's not cruel and unusual punishment to sentence a young man to life imprisonment for a first-time drug offense even though virtually no other country in the world does such a thing. so we've got to end this idea that the criminals are them not us. and instead say there but for the grace of god go i. all of us have made mistakes in our lives, taken wrong turns. but only some of us have been required to pay for those mistakes for the rest of our lives. in fact, president barack obama
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himself has admitted to more than a little bit of drug use in his lifetime. he's admitted to using marijuana and cocaine in his youth. and if he hadn't been raised by white grandparents in hawaii, if he hadn't done much of his illegal drug use on predominantly white college cam putses and universities -- campuses and universities, if he had been raised in the hood, the odds are good that he would have been stopped, he would have been frisked, he would have been searched, he would have been caught, and far from being president of the united states today, he might not even have the right to vote depending on the state he lives in. >> you can watch this and other programs online at >> i'd like to begin with a story. one evening in 1954 at the nix -- as the nixons exited a dinner, they came across an
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indian woman sitting on a bench outside the banquet hall. pat thought she recognized the woman and asked if dick did. when he said, no, they continued down the stairs. halfway down, pat remembered the woman and made her husband return to where the woman was sitting. pat spoke with the woman and asked her if they had not met previously. when the woman replied that they had, pat asked about her stay in the u.s. and inquired what she was doing in the hallway. the woman explained that she was returning to india in a few days and hoped to catch a glimpse of the president before she went home. pat then arranged for the woman to be given a seat at the dinner so that she could hear the speech as well as see the president. the nixons then left the hall to continue on to their previous engagement. i use this story to begin my talk because i think it exemplifies several key points i wish to make about pat nixon and her public role. more particularly, about her role as foreign diplomatment --
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diplomat. first, pat met the indian woman during one of her travels as second lady. for pat the traveling she did as first and second lady was the best part of her job as a political wife. second, this woman was not the wife of an ambassador or a statesman, she was just a young woman who had come to the united states, who had come out first to see the second lady and then had come to the united states to study. pat didn't limit her contact on her travels to important people. she treated everyone she met as though they were the most important person in the world. the people he met sensed her sincerity and responded to it. third, she was happiest in her role when she could take action. the party the nixons were at and the engagement they were going to were not as important at that moment as getting this visitor from india a seat at the presidential dinner. in the greater scheme of things, this is really a small act.
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but it left a lasting impression both on the woman involved, the indian woman involved, and on the all at the table that she was eventually seated at. that's how we know about the event was from a letter of someone she ended up sitting with responded and wrote to pat later about it. for pat politics was a job and one she didn't always enjoy. while on occasion she was proud of her work in helping to raise funds for the party, she found many of huertasings frustrating and mind numbing. by the end of her first term, she expressed jealousy of her friends' reentry into the wouldk force. the thrill of meeting famous men and women and the glamour of white tie dinners at the white house wore off leaving only the tiring routine of constant evenings away from her girls and idle chatter with women she did not always like. for someone who had worked hard
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her entire life -- and she had worked hard her entire life -- this situation could at times be intolerable. it was not the long hours or the physical challenges that weighed her down, she resented not being useful, not doing something meaningful. perhaps that is why foreign travel appealed to her. during her trips overseas, she felt that she was playing an important role. she was representing american interests abroad. her introduction to role as american representative came during her first year as second lady when president eisenhower sent his vice president on a tour beginning in asia and continuing to parts of the subcontinue innocent. during the fall of 1953. president eisenhower told the vice president that he should take pat with him. now, he realized that this trip was going to be work, but it was going to be interesting. >> you can watch this and other programs online at here's a look at some of the
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upcoming book fairs and festivals happening around the country. during the second weekend of march, booktv will be live from the tucson festival of books in arizona. among several authors featured are timothy eagan and kristin iverson. be sure to check out for updates on the schedule. the virginia festival of the book begins wednesday, march 20th and runs through sunday, the 24th. this annual charlottesville, virginia, event features several authors including douglas brinkley and congressman john lewis. also that weekend it's the 26th annual tennessee williams new orleans literary festival in louisiana. it'll feature its third annual poetry contest, live one-act plays and highlight presentations by authors william j. smith and patricia brady. florida will host the venice book fair and writers' festival during the first weekend in april. it'll feature author presentations and readings in the historic venice theater. please let us know about book fairs and festivals in your
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area, and we'll be happy to add them to our list. post them to our wall at or e-mail us at booktv at c -- >> i want to move to the role of publishers in this new world. it used to be that publishers would take care of all distribution, they would take care of production, and they would provide the advance. and that series of services led them to take a very hefty cut, a 95% cut. now, now you don't need production because you can put it out on the web, you don't need an advance because it doesn't cost that much to write, or you can use something like kick starter, and you don't need the distribution, again, because you can put it on web. and so what is the changing role of publishers in this new world where production and distribution and financing are starting to be taken by different, different technologies?
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>> so there's a lot in there, and be let me kind of unpack it. first, i actually disagree fundamentally with a couple of things. um there's, there are production, distribution costs, and, you know, tasks involved whether it's digital or physical. i think it's a very common sort of misunderstanding. it's very easy to think that digital is free. and it's not. i mean, there's a lot of backlash, actually, if you will, over some of the early books. and we've got an extensive back list, thousands and thousands of titles that are converted. there's a conversion process that takes place, and there's a lot of care and fielding that must go into that because in the early days when you're just sort of literally scanning books to get them into an e-format, you just were not replicating the book properly. so first of all, there's still a production not just cost, but an
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entire new competency around production of a digital book and presenting that properly. i'm actually looking at our head of children's publishing who's smiling because she and i have these conversations all the time. when you talk about children's books and how to produce something that is for color that, you know, conveys the gorgeous illustrations, um, that the artist intended -- >> but if that's true, surely that's only true for the first copy. >> correct. >> and every one thereafter is free. because it's -- there's no marginal cost to make ten million copies. >> right. you lose paper printing binding. the marginal cost of paper printing and binding. the other thing -- >> and shipping. >> and shipping. >> and warehousing. >> yeah, and warehousing. >> not netly. not necessarily. [laughter] >> no, not necessarily. there's a deep infrastructure that is needed to support
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digital operations. the other thing, um, i would mention about the state of sort of publishing today is if you talk about the future of reading, the future of publishing, you know, where are e-books going to go, that's kind of the big question, will it be a complete swapping out from the physical to the digital media that has happened in music, for example, in and in film, photography, that is, in books i believe there's not going to be that swapping out 100 percent of physical for digital. children's books, i think, are a great example of where there's a very, very strong desire to have a physical book to flip through with your child. now, that's today. five, ten years from now, you know, we might be speaking on something different. but today publishers are in a world where they can't be jumping tracks from the physical to the digital, we're truly supporting two businesses. so you're continuing to support the print business while
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continuing to support the digital business. underlying that is sort of a third business that you're, that you are cultivating which is getting to a place where we're not talking about the conversion of e-books. so merely taking what used to be in a physical form and now porting it over into a digital form, but the creation of digital products, the creation from really creating a digital product from conception, something that was initially conceived with the author, developed with the author to be a completely new digital product. so the role of publisher in that scenario because the one thing that you had sort of forgotten, i think, on your list of what publishers do, it's the heart of the editorial. it's really bringing that story, you know, shaping that story with the author and bringing it to market in the best possible way. that still exists and exists, i think, in even more exciting ways when you talk about the creation of digital p-only
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products. >> okay. >> shaping the story may be the only role, actually. because there's almost nothing left after -- helping shape the story is -- >> wrong! [laughter] i always wanted to get my john mclachlin on. but, no, seriously, you're wrong. [laughter] i will say that, you know, as the other side we're partners. she's not my publisher, but she is a publisher. >> you might be. [laughter] >> i'm happy where i am. but, you know, it's about who's doing what here. and, again, because i came from more of a digital foundation, i was skeptical of everything. i can do that, i can do that, i've got spell check, what have you got? [laughter] and it turns out i was wrong about a few things, i was right about a few things, and i've learned a ton in the process. in terms of editorials, having an editor was great.
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of course, i could have hired a great writer/editor to help me through that process. i was happy to have the support of the person at harper, that was really cool. the distribution of the physical, that i ignored completely. you know, i basically got free advertising across the nation on book shelves. i can't buy that. no single person can afford distribute 10, 15, 20,000 books if in hundreds and hundreds of bookstores and libraries all around the world. and digital-only doesn't do that because you cut off the physical marketing in that sense. so that helped support the digital. when they ran out of physical books, my e-book sales spiked. so there was, there is a level of demand regardless of format, and people literally, you could see the charts, they switched over. but they would have probably gotten a physical book. and then the actual marketing of the thing, me and my campaign manager for the book, a guy named craig who i met through the onion, we built this rabid
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internet army digital plan, and harper did the more traditional big media plan. and got me on msnbc and all these things that, again, as an individual it's very hard, that's a network game. and that's a roll decks game. and there's a finite amount of people who can make that sort of thing happen, and the flood of authors can't all pull that off on their own. so i, you know, found that i was wrong that publishers are useless. [laughter] and i was glad for it, you know? because we were splitting this here money, and i wanted to make sure we were both doing something. [laughter] and i learned a lot about, you know, the excitement, the upside and the limits of what individual authors or authors who create a collective or create their own kind of digital presence, but there's a flood of readers, there's also l a flood of writings in words versus tweets, blogs and also books, just more books than ever. and how do you discover, how do you convince somebody that you're worth their time, you
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know? attention is the currency. and when you spend it watching a cat -- whether you spend it watching a cat play a filled l on youtube or reading about the future of blackness, that's an equal choice to some people. [laughter] right? in this world we're competing for pixels, for real estate, for mental real estate. and there's so many extra writers competing for attention that a publisher, you know, who knows what they're doing can add a little extra weight on top of the individual kick starter, you know, moving artist or somebody that's like i've got a blog platform, i'm going to print out my blog and call it a book. >> i think that's true, but you're an exception because you wrote a bestseller. the shelf life of a book, i'm sure that cheryl would confirm this, is a matter of weeks or days. and most books don't make it into bookstores. we're living in a different world. now, i agree in this world publishers are crucial. i'm really worried about
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booksellers, however, because that middle person is beginning to disappear, and outfits like amazon are transforming the way books reach readers. and then there's a movement in the other direction that i think very few people have noticed. there were about 350,000 new titles published in the u.s. last year. a 6% increase over the previous year in paper. the book industry is actually doing very well, although publishers are always wringing their hands and saying the end of the world. [laughter] but compare with that 350,000 700,000 books were self-published, twice as many books are produced by independent authors who put them online and have something to say. now, you might claim that there's a lot of garbage among that 700,000 books, but i think there's a lot of good stuff as well. so i really feel that if you
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look at the publishing industry, i don't know if you would agree, we are witnessing a transformation in its structure. so some of the middle, intermediaries are moving out, and somehow the public is moving in in strange ways. you know, it used to be said that books were written for the general reader. now they're written by the general reader. >> you can watch this and other programs online at >> and our live coverage from the savannah book festival concludes today with historian gary wills, the pulitzer prize winner who almost became a priest himself in his latest book takes a look at how priests became a part of christianity, and he questions whether they are now a necessary component. here's author garry wills. ..
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>> there's an opportunity to donate in the yellow buckets as you exit the venue. i ask you take a moment to check all of your cell phones and make sure they are turned off on silenced. you might have noticed the cameras that are set up in this venue. this is c-span's booktv broadcasting the savannah book festival live to the nation. this is the second year of our partnership with them, and we cherish their support.
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please be on your best behavior. you're on national tv, and let's give c-span a round of applause. [applause] >> this beautiful venue we're in today is sponsored by mr. and mrs. jack ramono, and our speaker, pulitzer prize winning historian gary wills is sponsored by mr. and mrs. robert onstock. he's a professor of history at northwestern university in illinois. he's wrote on 20 # topics like jesus, executive power, opera, and richard nix con. his book won the pulitzer prize for non-fiction. the newest book, came out just this week, called "why priests: a failed tradition," and he
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examines the priesthood in the context of the new testament. i'm honored to introduce to you mr. gary wills. [applause] >> pardon me for sitting. i can't stand for any length of time. we're asked to talk about our life in writing. my life in writing is tied up in st. augustine. i studied him in high school and studied him in college, read him all my adult life, and more and more over the decades, i concentrated on him, wrote a life on him, translated the confessions, commented on the confessions, and working on my
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favorite book of his, the trinity. this book came out of that reading because st. augustine did not believe that the bread and win given out at mass is the body and blood of jesus christ. he said that's ridiculous. you don't eat god, you don't digest god. he said that over and over. what is the body of christ, he said? st. paul tells us you are the body of cryings. the people of god, the mystical body, the church is the body of christ. well, i've noticed it was odd that's hardly referred to the fact that he didn't believe that that was the case, and he said it frequently and emphatically. i talked to peter brown, the great expert, and he was told by catholics that oh, august teen
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-- augustine believed it, but he believed in the early code of the church, which existed, but never applied to what was given out at the agape meal. it applied to the creed, especially. when you were prepared for baptism, you learned the creed by heart. you were forbidden to write it down or to say it out loud anywhere where a nonbaptized person could hear it. that was the innermost secret of the faith, the creed. as i explored it more and more, there's a line of people in the middle ages kind of forgotten now for very good reason, they all had the view that's not really the literal body and
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blood, and i began to wonder why why do we never hear about the people? we didn't because they were condemned, but nonetheless, there was a tremendous argument about do we take this very literally? some people said, no, it's a symbol. it's gee -- jesus in a represented way. some said if the question came up, well, why is it not -- if it's jesus, why does it so much taste like bread, look like bread, smell like bread? they said it's bread too, but jesus is in there. by the 13th century there was a hardening views that it was the literal body and blood of jesus so the theologians, preimminent among them, said they solved the
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problem distinguishing substance from accident. a dog is the substance, and he's a dog whether he's white, black, big, or small. he can be a great dane. the dog is still a dog. that's the substance. there are two different things, and so thomas said, well, why can't we say jesus now is the substance and it's only the accidents that are breads and wipe? one problem of that, of course; is that aristotle never said you could distinguish the two, but you can never separate them. you can't have a dog that's white or black or any color, and you can't have a color that doesn't have substance it adheres to it. accidental means disattal accidental to a substance. it was a con game to say it solves the problem. it didn't really. i began to wonder why, against
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common sense and against really strong tradition was it so important to the church to encyst, and thomas did it in the most literal way. not only was the it substance of the body and the blood in each, but it was in every part of it. if you dropped a little part of the host, that was god on the floor, and you had to pick it up and either eat it, burn it, or bury it. you can't just let god be trodden on by anybody who wants to pass by. he went into long, long, long, long stories about, well, what if a fly falls into the chal after? the fly is now coated with god. you got to take it out, wipe that off and burn the fly. what if poisen is put in, the priests can't drink the poisen,
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but it's still a poisen mixed with god so, again, you have to pour that out into the ground and you bury it up. in all of those ways, every little part, every little drop was god, was jesus. well, why we they so intent on enforcing this, and it was enforced with great rigor. it was her represent call to go against that. i think because there was a tremendous investment in the priesthood. the whole point of the consecration of the bread and wipe is only a priest can do it. the whole community depends on him. if you have catholics coming together to pray any other way, and a priest doesn't show up, they have not had the mass. they have not really had the real jesus there.
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st. augustine thought when the people of god came together, that was the body of christ. he said when he gave the bread to them, that was a symbol they were the body of christ eating feeding their spiritual energy saying that's you lying on the at tar, that bread. he says, receive what you are, the body of christ. when had became a matter of the priests changing the very substance, it's an act almost of new creation, uncreates the dog, the host, or the wine, and you create under a mere rack -- miracleous -- that made my go a step further and say what gave the priest this tremendous
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power? i started looking at the assessment, and the od thing is in the time of jesus, there were no followers. no more priests among the followers of jesus. there were priests, of course, the jewish priests, and the original followers of jesus went to tell. , observed worship, and went to synagogue. when paul went back from traveling, met james, ahead of the church in jerusalem, he said, you're traveling, a good jew, go to the temple and be purr mid. he did. they had priests such that they were the jewish priests, but aside from that, the followers of jesus never offeredded sacrifice, which is what a priest does. paul mentions ministries like excysts, readers, speakers in tongues, healers, interpreters of tongues. all of these, but never mentions priests or calls himself a
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priest, never calls anyone else that he worked with a priest. peter was not a priest. peter was not a bishop because there was no bishops in rome in the first century. in the middle ages when the pope became the monarch, there was a tremendous investment in the direct power of the priest as a stand in for god, the victor of christ. that's normally said now about the pope, but it was said about the priest too because when he comes there, he is jesus, and he says this is my body when he gives communion, doesn't mean it's the priest's body, but jesus' body, and he speaks like jesus, i forgive you your sins, the priest says i forgive you, but he means jesus. he stands in. he becomes jesus. he's separate from the rest of the people of god. you have the mystical body, and outside and above it, the
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priest. that was a tremendous power investment on the church's part. it was used as a power tool. if you didn't please the church, you could be excommunicated. that is, the priest could ri fuse to give you the body and blood of jesus. you are not part of the mystical body, yourself, you had to wait to get the body from the priest. if the propose in the middle ages was the monarch had armies, had countries, realms, spies, had prison, had torturers, and when he got into an argument with another country, if he wanted to really enforce hiss will, he would slap an interdict on them. saying i'm not going to let any of the priests concentrate you first in your kingdom until you
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knuckle under. that's how you used the power of the priesthood. well, jesus said, don't put yourself above -- when the disciples argued along the way, jesus said, what were you arguing about? they said who will be in charge when you're gone. he said don't think about putting yourself above any of your fellow followers. he said don't be called father. you have one father in heavy. don't be called rabbi. you have one teacher in heaven. there was no priesthood and no -- and jesus advised against it being a priesthood. how does that come in? well, when the temple was built, destroyed by the romans in 70, the year 70, the priest ended, the sacrifice ended.
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there are no more sacrifices the temple, but an odd griewn of followers of jesus who had had that up to that point, they had observed temple worship, missed it xz -- it, and an odd letter is written to the people. it's means people yearning back to the hebrews, and nobody know who wrote it. it was attributed to paul for many years, but it's definitely not by him in doctrine or language or in any way. it remains totally anonymous. there's many attempts to figure out if an author for it. the los angeles is different from the new testament, and there's many, many new words, different words. it's good greek, by the way, whoever it was -- it's a weird
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argument. because he is trying to placate yearning back towards temple worship. he does two things. he says, you don't have to worry, we have our own sacrifices, and it's better than the old temple worship. on the other hand, he wants it similar to satisfy the fact that that is what they are yearning back to. he tries to show saying ours is better because that was animal sacrifices. we have human sacrifices. jesus iewfers himself up as a sacrifice to god, to the father. augustine really destroyed that argument too saying, you think the fatherments to kill his son noter to make himself happy? with mankind? he says in a way it's light, the temple sacrifice because after all, the carcasses of the slaughtered animal burnt outside the wall, and jesus was crus mid
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outside the wall. jesus was not a levite, he was not descendent from aaron, but from the tribe of judah. remember that strange person in the book of genesis, he was a high priest, he was a high priest of the caananite god, but they offered a tithe tithe to him, to the priest, the normal tides to the temple, and he said not animal abraham, but aaron offered a tithe to him because he was in the loin. eventually, he'd be born in the line of abraham to through that connection, he found a new kind of priesthood, and jesus is in the line of him although he can't be in the line of the levites. to this day, catholic priests
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are ordained into the order of him as a priest forever. even though the letter to the hebrews had said jesus is going to do this just once. our sacrifice is better because it's a one sacrifice for all time, for all people whereas the high priest comes in annually and offers sacrifices over and over and over year by year by year for sins accumulating. even the letter to the hebrews did not imagine jesus was setting up a line of priests who would follow him, so through of series of strange accidents, you set up a sacred order outside the normal people of god, and, of course, it cull -- culminates, and only the pope is consecrate bishops, and only the bishops can ordain the priests,
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and they all answer to the top so people talk about the pope as the head of the church. that infuriated paul. jesus is the head of the church, not any human being. lucky, catholics are developing the art of ignoring the pope on a lot of ground, which they should do. in fact, in the 19th century in england, john henry newman wrote the laity is sometimes more true to the gospel than the hierarchy, and he was denounced in rome and he had to fold the journal in which he wrote that and pius ix issued a syllabus of errors saying not just the laity shouldn't have a say in things, but ordinary people shouldn't
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have a say in things. democracy is an invalid form of government. the friend and fellow catholic of newman said to gladstone, the prime minister, who said, the pope is just a tact. every form of government, and he said don't worry, catholics don't pay attention to the pope when he talks politics. well, more and more, we're not paying attention, not only on contraceptives which is abandoned by catholics for decades now, but even on things like literal body railism about the body and -- literalism about the body and blood of jesus. the most hold under cattics under 30 done in the 1990s showed that 40% of them already didn't believe that it was the literal body and blood of jesus, catholics under 30, and we don't act that way anymore. there's an old saying, the way
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you pray is the way you believe. you act out your faith. well, when i was an altar boy, if you dropped a hogs, that was gone, and all had to gather around and doing in intowt it. if you spilled wine, you had to wipe it up and burn all of that. now, you know, to avoid having that problem, you are given a little thin host so that it moments on your tongue so you didn't have to treat it like ordinary food and chew it. now we eat plain old bread. in my church, it's basically a muffin, and there's crumbs all over the place, but nobody sayings, oh, my god, we have to get god off the floor. [laughter] there is an actual belief of the
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body of christ, the people of god that exists apart from the dictates of the folks who had been coming and going, and i think that will grow. it's existed in the path. there was a lot of, not only ignoring the pope, but attacking the poem and hating the pope in the middle ages. dante painted popes in hell. this adoration of the poem came in with pius ix. i was asked a lot the last few days who do you think will be the new pope? i said, i don't care. i want the pope to be irrelevant. he's working very hard to achieve that. [laughter] that's what the book's about, thank you.
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[applause] >> a few questions here, yea, ma'am. >> you mentioned that priests were not cred depp issue until after jesus was crus mid, but at the last supper, didn't jesus say to the 12 apostles, including the judas who betrayed him, do this in memory of me? >> not after the crus fix, but before, do this in memory -- said this is my body, this is my blood, do this in memory of me, but when he said it, you know, does that mean that bread was really his body? what was giving the bread? you know, his body was there when he gave the bread to them. it was a symbol of their union. they didn't mean start eating
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me. don't eat my arm that's giving you this. don't eat my hand. when he's giving my body and blood to you he means my life is yours. it's the way we'll say my heart and soul yours. >> say they were priests at that time? >> there are no priests, no. >> in memory of me and sent out the 12 # men -- >> pardon? >> just disciples -- >> well, they were various titles. the highest title -- paul says there are apostles, prophets, there are rairds, and -- readers, and then the original church was charismatic saying the spirit gives different graces to different people. do these different things, but all charismatic movements need a certain amount of organization
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we find out that servants which now are called deacons take care of getting food for the congregation, but the word for priests and those who offered sacrifice, nobody is called that in the new testament other than in the one letter for the one and only time, and no other follower of jesus is called that. the main thing to think of is that the very word was never used of any follower of jesus in the new testimony. >> [inaudible] >> well, the book just came out. i'm not getting too much, but i've been getting priests at the
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various readings. i've halfway into the book tour, and most of them, as you would imagine, come because they agree. a lot of priests agree. you know, a lot of priests are resentful of the kind of discipline they live under. it's not just the last monarchy, but it's the last of both of the systems. it's toal -- totalitarian. you can't be a priest without being ordained by a bishop, and a bishop can't be con se -- consecrated without being appointed by the pope. if the priest disagrees with the teaching on contraception as many, many, many of them do and have told me, they can't say that. if he says it, the vatican tells the mission to tell that priest down. it's a totalitarian system.
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the preach, the priests who live under it have various reactions, various rationalizations, some resent it, some leave, others figure, well, i do enough other spiritually important work that i just have to swallow my misgivings on this, and so they ignore it. you know, no priests anymore preaches against contraception. bishops thunder on it saying wii not going to give communion to people who disagree with us, but priests don't really doo that anymore because they are -- their close enough to the community to know that's just gone. >> so do the baptist and presbyterians have it right or
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is there some aspect of con csh catholicism you maintain that the other denominations have been sort of -- where the body of christ is the congregation, something just left in catholicism? >> yeah. there's several ways of stating that question. one is if you don't like the pope, why don't you leave? i don't think the pope is a church. that's saying the propose is a church so i have to get out. say say, well, you're no presidenter than protestant. they got me. [laughter] i am no better than a protestant. do i have to leave the body of christ? where do i go? i'd join the body of christ because the protestants are baptized believers in jesus.
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the one gospel text that's least add verted to now and in the past is the chapter nine in the gospel of look. we came across a man casting out devils in your name, but he was not one of us. we made him stop. he said, why did you do that? they were doing it in my name. if they are for me, they can't be against me. well, the history of christianity has been a lot of jewish -- christians saying to other christians you can't use jesus' name, stop, it belongs to us. we own it. the great scandal of christianity is that christians have killedded christians in massive numbers.
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popes have burnt christian hair ticks, massacred heretics. they were christians doing it in jesus' name. queen mary i of england burnt 200 protestants because they were not catholic. queen elizabeth, who was a protestant, chopped up by the scores because they were not protestants. calvinists in new england hanged quakers. protestants in america burnt convents. these are jesus' people killing jesus' people. that is what has to stop. for me to say that i want to be part of the body of christ that i have always lived with doesn't mean i don't want to be part of the christ of lutherans. i am no better than they are, but they are no better than we are.
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we are all really one if we just start reading the gospel again. >> i just wonderment i'm a lutheran. we have hierarchies. why do you think all the protestants, like why did they break away and then do the same thing? with having bishops and -- it must work, somehow. >> yeah, ignore theirs the way we ignore ours. [laughter] >> [inaudible] >> yeah, well, the pope became a monarch in the middle ages because all authority was
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monarchs, and in a way, that was giving into the popular mood at the time, and the church, you know, the idea that the church never changes is nonsense. of course, it changed a lot. it's changed in reaction. it was a popular thing to be one in the middle ages. that's the expected thing. orders were already in place, and they wanted to organize society around the obedience as to the pope and the priests. the masculinity, the mail -- male only monarchy was a part of that. you know, what the pope -- what paul vi said, jesus only ordains maryellen -- ordains male priests. no one was a priest then.
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there were women leaders, very high leaders. paul talks about one as an apostle. he was talkedded about one as his coworker,s same he said of timothy and titus and others, and the original agape meals were in households. paul address the households. household church was the original church, and the hostess there was the presider. she was not a priest because there were no priests, but as time went on, the general prejudices of the society insected the church, and they are hanging on to them longer than others because the church now pretends to be changeless. once a bad idea gets in, even if it's from a fairly acceptable thing at the time, it's very hard to extrude it, you know, because of the church. they claim they never change.
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people said, well, should we have women priests? i hope not. i don't want priests. i want women leaders. we are getting them. in my church that i've been going to for 33 years, it's a campus church at northwestern university, and as all campus churches or parrishs in general, priests have come and gone. we had no say in that. the priest comes when the bishop tells them to and goes when the bishop tells them to. one priest we wantedded to hold on to, and we asked to let him say, and he said, no, i have other uses for him. that's one of the bad things about this hierarchy totalitarianism. during that time, first one woman, and then for a long time another woman, was very
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important to the community. it's a come pus church so there's a lot of students who were converts, prepared them for baptism, for marriage, prepared -- we didn't have a lot of children, but we had chirp. she would take care of them. she was closer to the community than the priest was. when the first one resigned because she was getting old, the fair well for her was such that her students who had gone through under her came back from around the country. there was much more celebration of her than of any priest that left, and after she left, mary came in. she had been a student of theology. he was -- she was preaching into the bishop got word of it, but she was doing the same thing, and she's closer to the church, and she's the real glue that holds
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together this part of the body of christ. i want women leaders. we're getting them. there's more women studying theology all the time. there are there's a greater role for deacons. there's about as many deacons as priests now. they are ordained to a minor order, they don't have the sole power to consecrate which is the source of the problem with priests, and, of course, it's also setting apart the body of christ in terms of denominations. that is only we have priests; therefore, all the other places that don't, and even the ones who think they have priests don't really, you know? paul vi says the athens think they have priest, but they don't because they were in the ordained by bishops in the succession. only descendents of peter, only the succession from peter can do
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that. their sackments are invalid. they should stop. you know, it's the same old story. they think they are doing it in jesus' name, but we got to stop them. in terms of the male monarchy, that'll hang on in rome like all of those outdated things there, but it's changed on the ground. >> i want to compliment you on your book, a stupendous read. >> i didn't get that? what did you say? >> [inaudible] >> oh, i'm so glad you liked that book. that's such fun to write it. it's about the milan of ambrose,
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the 4th century bishop. he was like in that when you were chosen originally, even when priests came in, they were chosen by their congregation, and then bishops were chosen by their congregation, and when you chose it, you had to take it because they were the boss. they are the people of god. ambrose, a secular ruler at that time when they said you got to be the bishop of milan, he said, no, i can't. you know, my hands are unclean because i've had the secular power, and, besides, i'm not even baptized, and he said, sir, we'll baptize you. they baptized him, ordained him, and consecrated him in a week and he was the bishop of m, ilan, immensely important leader and ruler setting up a chain of
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churches, and he had this big double cathedral, and augustine who came from africa to serve the emperor who was living across town because the emperor moved up from rome to milan to face northern threats, he set up these churches, and augustine on the side of the emperor originally and not thinking of ambrose thinking he was a demagogue, finally, through various other people he accountanted wanted -- sued for baptism on the part of ambros, e and so ambrose baptized him. my wife and i spent fun times going to all the churches because since they were phut -- put up by him, children are
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called, and painters paint, you know, and anyway, because that was such fun, they were really amazinged when we found -- amazed when we found out after going there for sometime that the big double cathedral he inherited from an area was raised in the 14th century and they had a huge gottic cathedral. the others was all lost other than in world war ii, they dug for bomb shelter and became across stones done below. after the war, they started digging around and found, there's the cathedral, all laid
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there, all five aisles of it, it's 80 # some yards long, it seemedded to have disappeared, and over the years he reconstructed the story, but the most important part is there's a separate standing building which was where the secret of the creed was first learned, and it only opened on easter day to let in new, and it was a famous place, and there was a lot of baptists were formed in imitation of it. there was a famous set of inscriptions around it. there's a great pool, and that time, of course, you were totally immersed three times and come up at the end, do you believe in the father, immersion, do you believe in the son, immersion, do you believe in the holy spirit, immersion. that's the place where he
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baptized augustine, and that makes it such a say credit spot for me. we were amazinged when my wife and i went there, you go inside the cathedral, and right inside there's stairway with a small sign with one or two euros, whatever it is, and we go down there, and there's nobody there. one custodian, sometimes two or three people down there a long time, but nobody pays any attention to it. they wanted to take the elevator up to the top, the site at the top of that cathedral, and, anyway, the fount of life is the book i wrote about that, about that's the fount of life. how augustine was instructed in the day, and how ambrose fought for the church. his father against, and his
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mother on the side of ambrose so it's -- it's a thrilling place to me and a thrilling story, so that's kind of my favorite book now. >> do you think seeing that the vatican was granted with nation state status in the 20th century, is there -- the italians really seem to really disfranchised themselves from the catholic church. is there any chance that they will lose that status, and will that, you know, facilitate, you know, the destroying the hierarchy? >> he asked whether the vatican as a separate state will cease to exist. no, i don't think so because, you know, it's a historical curiosity. it doesn't bother most people. pius ix said you can't take my
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realms away from me. they said, yes, we can. he said, all right, i'll seal myself up in the vatican and i'll be a prisoner, holding you as my captors. he refused to go out on the balcony and face the world and say, "blessings to the world." well, his successors, first pius x and pius xi had to back off from that daying the vatican as a prison. pius xi said if you'll give us a certain number of advantages, muse leanny, if you make education in the italian schools catholic, if you'll treat catholicism as the state religion of italy, then we'll set up a concordance with you, and you'll give us the status of a separate country.
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the van can is a separate country. it doesn't have any normal citizens, you know, no women citizens. it's got post offices and other signs of the government, but it's a fake government. it's a fantasy government. you know, it's kind of a disneyland government. [laughter] nobodiments to take -- nobody wants to take it away. my wife refused to go to the vatican after the first few times. it's got beautiful treasures in there, but it's a great fortress is great treasures inside, and everywhere, paintings of the donation of con stan tine, the mystical giving of worldly power to the pope, painting on chairs of the bishop peter, which he never was, coats of arms of all of the noble popes who took over
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in the renaissance, and she said, you know, what could be more against the gospel of jesus than this earthly trumpeting of power and pride? it's not going to go away, but as i say, we really should start treating it with the disrespect it deserves. [laughter] >> is it possible for a church or religion to have structure with hierarchy, implied leadership? is it possible to have that without coming into a toal tearianism, and if so, is it possible to do that, and what would be the best structure? >> yeah. is it possible for a church not to have a high ark yal
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structure? no, they always have to have it. what's bad is that the priest has this exclusive power over the sackmental life of people, you know, and it comes to -- a priest can refuse to forgive you your sins. a priest can, in effect, send you to hell. it's an exclusive power to be jesus, to change the sack countrimental species, to be the arbiter over sin and marriage. priests can say you are marryied or you're not. they said both to my mother at one point. that kind of -- that priest is the body of christ and is jesus. you can have hierarchy structures, and there's all kinds of original structures in the church even of paul, and, certainly, of the pastor letters and in the acts of the apostles,
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but that secret power of the priest, and, of course, that's what led to the scandal of the sexual abuse. sexual abuse is a horrible tragedy, and it occurs all over the place, unfortunately. it occurs in scouting, families, everywhere. what happened here, though, is that it was impossible to say, for a lot of people so say a priest could do this. after all, his hands are tied together when he's ordained, consecrated for the use of mass. when they had his finger chewed off by an indian woman in torture, he had to have permission in rome to consecrate with the other finger, that those fingers were stroking a
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penis of a boy. it was not your first normal abuse. parents tended not to believe things, father couldn't do that, no. when they thought there was something to it, and they went to priest, the priest would say, no, certainly he couldn't. the boy is lying. that went on and on, then, when they finally this to give up, they said we'll pay you some restitution if you say don't do it, don't tell about it. that was another thing they said, well, it did happen, unfortunately, and it's awful, but you don't want to cause scandal in the church, do you? you don't want to hurt the life of the church by publicizing this. the payoff for secret, the attempt to keep it secret. the denial going to the vatican, if you have not seen it, i hope you will. the hbo special on how extensive
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was the cover up, the denial, so there's the scandal, and then there's scandal on scandal on top of that. all that comes from this so-called special holiness of the priest. he's not jesus. we're jesus. >> this will be the last question. [inaudible] >> twice you've referred to the creed as being something that was in common for all the baptized to accept and that it was so important that it was kept secret and so on. which creed are you referring to, and how does it relate to the apostles creed that is recited at every mass today? >> yeah. the creed recited by augustine
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when he was body and blood tight -- baptized by ambrose was the apostles creed, but both creeds, the nigh seen is now recited at mass, both are the essential creeds referred to as "the creed," and, by the way, when cardinal, before he was the pope, was asked by somebody, are you -- aren't you disturbed that a lot of catholics don't seem to be paying much attention to what the pope says they should be doing? he said, no, doctrine is not reached by majority vote. it comes down from god. well, where did the creed come from? it came from the apostles originally in a kind of mythical way that they had all recited it, but it -- if that's the case, they were not priests. the nicine creed, hundreds and
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hundreds of bishops gathered and voted on the trinity, on the incarnation, on the resurrection, on the basic truths of the faith. there was a vote. there was a minority and a majority, and the majority won, so that was the way the truth was declared by the church. the people of god, that -- and the bishops who had gone there had been chosen. the church was originally very democratic. as i say, if they chose you, you had to do it if you were the bishop, and once they chose you, you could not leave them. augustine, ambrose didn't want to be a bishop, and augustine said the same thing. they wanted them. when you accepted, they had to stay with their boss. they said we're the people of god appointing you. augustine had to ask permission of his people to travel to an african council, and this was
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observed well after the middle ages, a bishop could not become a pope because he couldn't leave his dicoese. monks became popes, nephews of roman aristocratic families were popes, but bishops didn't. they couldn't. they couldn't leave their people, so those are the two creeds that i think of as the voice of the people of god. >> that's all the time that we have for today. >> thank you, all. >> thank you very much. [applause] [inaudible conversations]
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pulitzer prize winning author -- >> and that concludes booktv's live coverage of the 2013 savannah book coverage. it reairs tonight at midnight. [inaudible conversations]
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>> here with john muller, first book out. we all know a lot about frederick douglass, but you focus on the last 18 years of his life. why is that? >> many people know him as an abolitionist, statesman, advocate for women's rights, imu he was so much more than that. his last 25 years he spent in washington, d.c.. he moved here in the late -- early 1870s, children all lived in washington at that time. his children, louis, charles, frederick, jr., well respected in washington with positions, and washington was the place to be with reconstruction, first class of black congressmen, black senators, and they were
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prom innocent, but frederick douglass was the most prominent black man in washington. there was a call to start a newspaper, and frederick douglass, with the experience with the north star and a leader of the black press, they wanted douglass to help found the paper and finance it. douglass was reluck at that particular time, but he eventually came around, and on january 13th, 1870, the new era was launched, and that really brought in focus frederick douglass in washington. he was involved in local politics at that time, which we know, the modern republican party, a little different than the republican party of the 19th century. frederick douglass was very much a republican party man. the washington, d.c. got self-government in the early 1870s. norton parker chipman was the first nonvoting delegate to congress. douglass competed with chipman for that position. douglass was very involved in
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local politics. he then continued to run his newspaper. he also, at one point, was president of the bank, movedded his family here, and he really -- he really was a man of washington. i mean, we -- the -- just -- there's been many biographies written about him. we learn about him in grade school, in 1845, wrote his autobiography, told of his life experiences as an order, as a abolitionist, but his later life really has been ignored, and so spending time in washington, especially where his home is, i started to look into what has been written about his later life, and i found there was really not much written, and so i said, hey, this is a great opportunity. >> now, the home is called cedar hill; is that cricket? >> that's correct, yes. >> is it still here? >> yes. actually, in 1960s, john f.
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kennedy signed a bill that gave control of the house to the partner of interior, and then the early 1970s, frederick douglass' national historic site opened. it's a flag ship site of the national park service. it has over about 40,000 to 50,000 visitors every year. it sits high up on a hill from the top of cedar hill. you can see the washington monument to the left, the u.s. capitol dome to the right. it's really an amazing majestic view, and it's open seven days a week, and the curator of the douglass house contributed a forward to that. that was important to me, just to try to make the book not just kind of -- make it active living history so people read the book, and if they've never been to the douglass house, oh, i want to go there, and if they have not been there for years, oh, i have to go back and revisit mr. douglass. >> the curator at the douglass house wrote the forward.


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